3 Air Force Exercises to Improve Your Vision

Learn three of the drills Air Force athletes use to improve their vision.

Athletes at the Air Force Academy have been performing cadet vision training exercises for more than a decade, with impressive results. The first year the baseball team used vision training, they led the nation in batting average. Since then, Air Force athletes have achieved better than 20/20 vision and improved vision drill scores by 200 to 300 percent. Get your own results with these three vision drills.

Saccadic Drill

Why do it: Enhances eye stamina and focus, which pilots need to complete precision maneuvers and athletes need for games.

How to do it:

  • Assume sport-specific stance in front of two different letter charts located 10 feet apart
  • Call out first letter on left chart, then rapidly move eyes to read first letter on right chart
  • Progress down both charts as quickly as possible

Sets/Duration: 2x60 seconds, 1-2x per week

Saccadic DrillEye-Hand Speed Drill

Why do it: Develops hand-eye coordination and improves ability to make split-second decisions.

How to do it:

  • Assume athletic stance holding irregularly-shaped rubber reaction ball
  • Bounce ball off hard surface and catch
  • Change speed or distance to adjust difficulty
  • Can be performed alone or with a partner

Sets/Reps: 4x8-12 with 1- to 2-minute rest between sets, 1-2x per week

Eye-Hand Speed DrillAccommodation Drill

Why do it: Improves eye focus far and near.

How to do it:

  • Stand 20 feet away from 36-point letter wall chart; hold nine-point letter chart about six inches from eyes
  • Position hand-held chart slightly below wall chart in line of sight
  • Call out first letter on wall chart, then rapidly refocus to call out first letter of hand-held chart
  • Progress through both charts as quickly as possible

Sets/Duration: 2x60 seconds, 1-2x per week

Accommodation Drill


Photo Credit: Getty Images // Thinkstock