Sports Vision Training With Our Shreveport Optometrist Team
What Is Sports Vision Training?
Sports vision training (or therapy) is a service provided by our team here at Silverblatt Eye Clinic here in Shreveport, LA. The goal of sports vision training is to assist athletes in not only understanding how good their visual aptitude is, but also how to improve it.
Tests and techniques used in sports vision training go beyond a standard eye exam, which primarily looks at your ability to see letters and objects on a stationary eye chart. Of course, standard eye exams are important, and our team strongly recommends that everybody has their eyes checked on a routine basis to maximize vision and prevent and/or treat eye diseases.
However, If you are a local athlete looking to improve your sports performance, our optometrists can provide comprehensive sports vision testing and training that can evaluate and improve several dynamic visual skills that are critical for athletic performance.
Tests & Techniques Used During Sports Vision Training at our Shreveport Optometrist Office
The specific tests used during sports vision therapy will vary depending on the individual athlete’s needs (which can be determined by the results of our comprehensive sports vision exam and patient history taking). Our Shreveport optometrists offer several different vision tests for assessing athletic performance and capabilities:
Snellen Eye Chart
This is a classic vision test that virtually everyone has undergone at some point in their lives. During the test, the chart is placed 20 feet away from the patient. The patient is then asked to read the letters, which get increasingly smaller in size as you go further down the chart. This test is an effective way to evaluate an athlete’s visual acuity (the ability to see clearly) and can also help tease out hidden visual focusing problems (also known as refractive errors).
Refractive errors–including nearsightedness, farsightedness, and astigmatism–can certainly affect a person’s ability to see things clearly during sports. Treatment may include prescription glasses or contact lenses. If an athlete chooses to undergo LASIK eye surgery to correct the error, then our Shreveport optometrist team can provide both pre- and post-operative eye care.
Contrast Sensitivity Test
Contrast sensitivity is also important for athletic performance. Being able to discern between different objects or even spotting a small ball or puck on a field or rink relies on this visual skill.
During a contrast sensitivity test, the patient is asked to identify the alignment of parallel gray stripes that are placed against different colored backgrounds. Gradually, these backgrounds begin to match the shades of the stripes, becoming lower in contrast. Having a low contrast sensitivity (especially in low-light conditions) makes it more difficult to track objects.
An eye doctor in Shreveport at the Silverblatt Eye Clinic can offer several techniques to address contrast sensitivity problems. This may include wearing eyeglasses with a special tinted lens that helps increase visibility.
The Hirschberg test examines how well your eyes work together (also known as ocular alignment), which is critical for visual tracking (e.g., following the path of a ball as it moves in the air). During the test, an optometrist can analyze specific points on the cornea where light reflection occurs.
Eye Dominance Test
Our Shreveport eye doctors also recommend eye dominance tests. Dominance is determined by focusing on an object as it moves closer to the eyes. When one eye diverges or loses focus, this means that the other eye is dominant. If such loss of focus happens too soon, you could have a problem with your binocular vision, which can impair your depth perception and eye coordination.
Why Consider Seeing an Eye Doctor in Shreveport for Sports Vision Training
Sports vision training has been shown to enhance athletic performance. Specifically, we find that our athletes and active patients who undergo sports vision training develop:
- Better visual processing speed
- Improved hand-eye coordination
- Improved depth perception
When you think about the demands that most sports place on you, it’s no surprise that improving your visual skills can have a profound impact on your athletic ability.
Are You an Athlete? Have an Athlete in Your Family? Visit our Shreveport Optometrist Team for Sports Vision Training!
If you’re an athlete or have a student-athlete at home, then we invite you to contact our local Shreveport optometrist staff to learn more about the benefits of sports vision training and to schedule your initial appointment today. Call us now at 318-798-4000 to speak with one of our friendly staff members.