Yogic exercises have existed for centuries. Doing these, have kept us fit and healthy. Some of these exercises are difficult and require persistent efforts under expert supervision. But some of the exercises are so easy that we can perform those easily, anywhere, without any assistance. Yogic eye exercises are some such techniques which can be done anytime to relax, when we feel the strain on our eyes, and to keep them healthy.
The exercise suggested below are intended for people who have generally healthy eyes but suffer from eye strain or overly tired eyes, often due to prolonged computer usage.
Recommendation : Individuals with previously diagnosed eye conditions, such as glaucoma, macular degeneration eye disease or any other infection, should consult a doctor before performing these exercises. These are suggestions of the writer offered with an intention to help.
1. Strengthening Your Eye Lids: The muscles that surround your eyes can be strengthened just like other muscles of the body. Begin by partially closing the eyes, the lids should be closed halfway. You will notice that your upper eyelids will tremble. Focus your efforts on stopping this trembling. Hold for 10-15 seconds, close your eyes slowly for some breath.
Close your eyes and sit relaxed. Rub your hands vigorously until they become hot. Place the palms on the eyelids without any pressure. Feel the warmth and energy transmitted from hands to eye muscles. Remain in the position until the heat of the hands is absorbed by eyes. Gently lower the hands, keep eyes closed for some seconds and enjoy the breath.
3. Blinking: Sit comfortably with eyes open and spine straight. Blink your eyes intentionally and quickly 50-60 times. Close it and relax for 20 seconds. Repeat 2-3 times.
4. Sideways Viewing:
Raise the arms to the sides at shoulder level. Point the thumb upwards. Thumbs should be in peripheral vision, the head facing forward. Without moving the head, gaze and focus the eyes on
- Left thumb
- In between brows (Bhrumadhya)
- Right thumb
- In between brows
- Left thumb
Repeat this 10-20 times, keeping the head and spine straight. Finally close the eyes. Palming for several minutes.
5. Front and Side Viewing:
Place left thumb on the left knee pointing upwards. Hold the thumb to the right of the body pointing upwards. Without moving the head, focus on left thumb, then on right, again on left thumb. Repeat 10-20 times. Finally close the eyes, rest.
6. Rotational Viewing:
Place left hand on left knee. Hold the right fist above the right leg with the right thumb pointing upwards and elbow straight. Make a large circular movement with the right arm. Draw imaginary wide circles 5-10 times clockwise and anticlockwise. Finally close the eyes, and rest.
7. Up and Down Viewing:
Place both fists on knees with thumb pointing upwards. Keep arms straight. Slowly raise the right thumb to top of the head. Follow motion of the thumb with eyes. When thumb is raised to the maximum, slowly return to starting position. Practice with left hand also. Repeat five times with each thumb. Finally close the eyes and relaxed for a moment.
8. Preliminary Nasika Dhrishti:
Hold the right arm straight in front of the nose. Make a fist keeping thumb pointing upwards. Focus both the eyes on the tip of the thumb. Slowly bring the thumb to the nose tip. Follow the movement of tip with both eyes wide open. Remain for few seconds and return to the starting position. Practice with continuous and concentrative gazing. Practice 5 rounds.
9. Shavasna (Corpse Pose)
This exercise is to be performed after performing all other exercises. Lay down on your back. Keep feet apart. Also keep hands relaxed and apart, palms facing upwards. Fully relax and enjoy your breathing by closing your eyes. Feel the relaxation in your eyes.
Some useful tips: Here are some other useful tips you can try along with above mentioned exercises:
- Try to develop the ability to read with relaxed awareness and in a good posture. Long period of reading do not damage the eyes provided the mind and eyes are not stressed.
- Perform Child pose for a few minutes before starting reading, if mental tension is experienced in the eyes.
- Try to depend less on the use of glasses.
- Make a habit of walking barefoot on the grass in the morning or around sunset.
- Do not always cover your foot with restrictive footwear
- Do tratak (gazing techniques) at the sun for few initial moments when the sun is rising.
- Early morning upon waking up, fill your mouth fully with water. Hold some water in your palms and splash your eyes for 30-40 times. Preferably water should be cold.
- Glasses should not be worn while doing eyes exercise.
Hope you will enjoy the above mention techniques to keep your eyes healthier and beautiful. Please do not forget to mention in your comments below and share your experiences, if you try these.
Jai Shri Hari.