The modern lifestyle places great demands on our eyes. If you work with a computer, for example, they have to adapt to different contrasts and level of brightness up to 30 000 times a day. The figures for driving and sports activities are similar. It's no wonder that our eyes suffer for this, beginning to water, itch and redden. This is often accompanied by neck tension and headaches. But it doesn't have to be like this. A couple of simple eye relaxation exercises can put you back on the route to painless vision.
In today's society, more than one in two workers sits in front of a computer screen. Scientific studies show that constantly looking at the monitor impairs vision. Discerning contrasts, differentiating between colours and alternating between short and long distances become more and more difficult. Constant near-sighted work can even restrict your field of vision.
A couple of eye relaxation exercises can go a long way to helping this. They only take a couple of minutes, can be done anywhere and at any time, and can also help you to concentrate better when working at your computer. Why not give them a go? Here's an overview of the best ways to relax your eyes:
Make sure that you are seated comfortably, rest your arms on a flat surface, close your eyes and then place the palms of your hands over your eyes. It should be completely dark. Now breathe slowly and deliberately in and out for one or two minutes. Once you have done this, slowly take your hands away and open your eyes again.
Seat yourself comfortably on a stool and hold your head straight. Then look as far as you can in all four directions for two or three seconds each: up, down, left and then right. Repeat three times. Important: move only your eyes, not your head.
Eye socket massage
A gentle massage is very relaxing for the eyes. Using the tips of your thumbs, massage the area beneath your eyebrows – from the top of your nose to the edge of the eyelid – in circular motions.
Eye relaxation exercise
Sit up straight and stretch one arm out in front of your nose with the thumb pointing upwards. Now choose five objects: the tip of your nose, your outstretched arm, your thumb and two more object in the room that are further away. Look at each object in turn, resting your gaze on each object for a few breaths. Finally, use both eyes and let your gaze wander over the tip of your nose, your arm, your thumb and the two objects, finishing by looking into the distance.
Hold your right index finger at eye level, about half an arm's length from your eye. Hold your left index finger about 15 centimeters behind it. In a steady rhythm, look from one finger to the other. Do this for one minute.
Butterfly exercise (to prevent dry eyes)
Face forward with your head straight and relax your facial muscles and lower jaw. Then open and close both eyelids up to 20 times. Keep your muscles relaxed the whole time – your eyelids should move gently and effortlessly, like the wings of a butterfly.
Many companies and agencies offer professional eye training, advertising through seminars and books, and offering you a life without glasses. However, one thing is clear: there is currently no convincing scientific evidence that such methods are effective. Studies show a minimal increase in sharpness of vision, but not enough to allow you to drive a car without glasses. It is much more important to have glasses lenses that are customised to your specific needs, and to have regular eye tests with an optician.