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Protect Your Vision: The Remedies of Yoga

Thursday, March 18, 2010
By Anne Kramer

"The fastest way to bring the mind into concentration is through the eyes" -Swami Sitaramananda

Do you feel anxious and drained after a long day of staring at your computer? This can be due to eye strain - when you strain your eyes, you also strain your mind and your whole body. As the eyes strain to work harder, tension in the eye travels to the brain via the optic nerve. This results in increased nerve impulses and overall bodily tension.

As we age, eye muscles grow weaker and lose their elasticity. It becomes harder for us to focus on objects at certain distances and our vision becomes impaired as we lose muscle tone.

Like any other muscle in the body, the eye needs exercise and relaxation in order to maintain efficiency and function. When we close and relax our eyes, we reduce tension and increase eye health. Yoga offers visual exercises and meditation to not only help reduce vision loss, but also to reduce the stress and fatigue caused by eye strain.

By doing the following toning and meditation exercises you can prevent further vision loss and stress, and you can even improve your eyesight. Always remember to use eyesight-saving ergonomic tools like Anti-Glare Filters for your computer, and proper ergonomic lighting while at work and home to stop eye stain while it’s occurring.

Remember that you should only be moving your eyes, not your head or any other part of your body. The best part of these exercises is that you can do them while lying down. If you do them sitting up, make sure to keep your hands on your knees, spine erect, head straight, and body relaxed and motionless.

Do Exercises 1-5 five times each. Remember to blink several times and close your eyes after each exercise to relax and rest.

1. Up Down - Move your eyes as far up and as far down as you can, while staying centered.

2. Side to Side - Move your eyes left to right and right to left as far as you can, but without straining. Use pencils on both sides for markers – make sure you look at these points but do not strain your eyes.

3. The Corners - After choosing a point at the top right corner and top left corner of your eyes (at the same level), move your eyes from the top right to the bottom left. Do the same in reverse.

4. Circular - After a couple days of visual exercises, you can start with this method. Roll your eyes clockwise slowly to the floor and then to the ceiling and continue to make a complete circle – make sure you move slowly and make the biggest circle possible so you don’t strain your eyes. This also stretches your eye muscles and will enhance your progress. Repeat in the counter-clockwise direction.

5. Near and Far - Choose points close to you and a distance and alternate between the two back and forth. The best method is to use your finger – place your finger at the tip of your nose and move it away without raising it. Choose a point in the distance that you can also clearly see and alternate between your finger and the point in the distance.

6. Close the Eyes - For this exercise, close your eyes as tightly as possible, so they contract. Do this for three seconds. This exercise provides deep relaxation for the eye muscles and reduces eye-strain.

7. Palming - Rub your palms together to create static electricity. While sitting on the floor with your head straight, knees bent and feet on the ground, take your palms and place them over your eyes. Your fingers should overlap each other on your forehead and you should keep your elbows your knees for support.
Because palming helps you relax, you should end your exercises with it. You can start off by doing it for a shorter period of time and gradually increase every week.

A Perfect Harmony – Ergonomics and Yoga

Both yoga and ergonomics are implemented to enhance the body and how it functions in its environment. If you use a combination of these exercises and ergonomic treatments, you will decrease eye-strain, reduce stress and prevent anxiety while stopping further vision loss.

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