Can a Trampoline Help Your Vision?

| March 31, 2017

 

A commonly asked question at our office: “Why on Earth is there a trampoline in here? What does this have to do with my child’s vision?”

More often than not, the children skip asking what it’s for and jump straight to excitement: “A trampoline! This place is so cool!”

Back to the question, why do we have a trampoline in our therapy room? It is an indispensable tool in our therapy room for several reasons. Early on in our program, the trampoline can provide necessary “eye breaks” during therapy sessions. While the activities we do in a weekly session can be fun, they can also be taxing on eyes that are learning to do the work they need to. The trampoline provides the child with a chance to “reset” their tired visual system (think of how our children need recess to feel refreshed during the school day). The trampoline also provides stimulation to the vestibular system, which in turn will stimulate easier eye movements.

As therapy progresses, the trampoline is included as a component in several activities (which have previously been done standing or sitting). This loading of familiar activities brings the activity to a level we call “stress point learning.” When training the eyes, we must find a level of difficulty that encourages the brain to create new pathways. Our visual system will not improve if we do activities that do not provide a challenge, while an activity with too much difficulty will cause a child to shut down. This “just right” level of challenge has the added benefit of making less physical activities feel easier to the child. Think of the runner that wears wrist and ankle weights while training for a race. On the day of the race, the weights come off, and the runner practically flies down the track! We practice reading charts and playing catch (just to name a few activities) on the trampoline, in the hopes that when the time comes for the child to read a new book while sitting at their desk, that formerly stressful activity will be performed with more ease.

Why do we have a trampoline in our office? It is an incredibly valuable tool in vision therapy! For more information, please call our office at 374-8001.

By Kaitlyn, Vision Therapist

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Category: Fox Vision Therapy Blog

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