VT for Hand – Eye Coordination
Chelsea was finally able to ride a two-wheeler bicycle this spring. She has always had trouble with balancing on bikes, but now she’s riding her scooter really well, and her balance and coordination seems to be maturing. She doesn’t have to struggle to read now either. What a relief!
Kevin was so happy that yesterday’s vision re-evaluation showed that he has improved greatly over the last several months. It is obvious that his vision has improved immensely since beginning Vision Therapy.
Kevin’s life has truly been immeasurably enhanced by Vision Therapy, academically, athletically and socially. I never expected that his improved vision would have so many positive effects on his normal life as a 9 year old. Initially, I always knew/expected that Vision Therapy would help his reading challenges (losing place on page continually and poor comprehension). However, I didn’t know or expect that improved vision due to Vision Therapy was going to allow him to ride a bike with confidence (something his sister did at age 5 1/2 and Kevin can finally do at age 9 1/2), and improve in sports (hitting and catching a baseball, shooting a basketball, dribbling a soccer ball and snow skiing).
I think the one word that encapsulates Kevin’s improvement would be confidence. Kevin is now confident enough to try anything. Prior to VT, he would shy away from trying things that he knew would be difficult. He often took the attitude that he simply couldn’t do things. Now he is very willing to try nearly anything.
Thanks to Vision Therapy, Kevin now has the confidence to fail. That may sound odd, but prior to VT he wouldn’t even attempt to try things such as riding his bike to the library with his dad and sister, because he was sure he couldn’t do it. Recently, he simply decided that he could do it and he did. The thing that I was really pleased with was the fact that he told us before the ride that if he fell, it would be OK. He said lots of kids fall when they first learn to ride a bike. He rode his bike one mile each way without even coming close to falling.
When Kevin started VT in November, he was behind his peer group in essentially every area of life that required significant coordination and balance. I never correlated balance and coordination with vision. My wife and I have been working within the realm of the “traditional medical community” since Kevin was 18 months old. It took 7 years before an OT [occupational therapist] who worked with Kevin recommended Vision Therapy. The OT was the first and only one we worked with within the “traditional medical community” who recognized the benefits of Vision Therapy for Kevin. I’m so glad that we finally found that OT and then found a great developmental optometrist.
It has been a long and extremely frustrating eight years of trying to find medical help and improvement for my son Kevin. I have personally made countless Internet searches, phone calls, and written numerous letters. For many years my heart has hurt while I watched my son struggle to do the things that just come naturally to his peer group.
As I watched Kevin excel yesterday at the very same vision tests that nearly had him in tears eight months ago, I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry. I simply found the middle ground and smiled. My tears came later when Kevin wasn’t around.
For so many years I had the feeling that I was failing my son. No matter what I tried to do, I simply couldn’t seem to find medical improvement for Kevin. The older he got, the farther he was falling behind his peer group and the more I felt I was failing him. Yesterday afternoon as Kevin was mastering his vision tests, I finally had a feeling of validation. Finally, we had done right by Kevin. Vision Therapy has always been about Kevin and for Kevin, but you have to know that his unbelievable improvement has had an immeasurably positive effect, not only on Kevin, but his parents and sister as well.
I know that Dr. X is a mother and can relate to the fact that when Kevin was struggling, I hurt. When things were difficult for Kevin I wanted to fix them for him. Yet for some reason, for so many years, I didn’t make the right Internet search, I couldn’t seem to make the one phone call or write the correct letter to help Kevin. Then yesterday, as I did the vision tests silently while Kevin did them verbally and he did most of them perfectly, I knew that I had finally made that one phone call on behalf of my son that was going to change his life. That phone call led to Vision Therapy.
When Kevin and I drove home yesterday afternoon, we talked about how much he had improved his vision and his enjoyment of life due to Vision Therapy. I told him how proud I was of him for the effort he put into his therapy. Kevin thinks Dr. X is “da bomb.” I do too. I also told Kevin how proud I was of him for working so hard in the basement, practicing his Vision Therapy skills. For the last six months Kevin has been in the basement 3 to 5 times per week. Many times he didn’t want to do it, but he did it anyway.
I am convinced that Vision Therapy is a medical treatment that can benefit numerous children and adults. I am also convinced that the children and adults who pursue Vision Therapy need to do it with a willingness to “practice” the VT skills outside of your office. When Kevin was first tested, I really appreciated the fact that you asked him to promise that he would “practice” his VT skills at home 2 to 3 times a week. I’m here to tell you that he kept his promise. Clearly, he is reaping the rewards of keeping that promise.
I remember when my daughter Lauren, who is 3 years older than Kevin, would do things at a very early age and Kevin was delayed with nearly anything that required balance and/or coordination. As parents, we are not supposed to compare our children. However, it is a natural thing to do. Lauren was somewhat of a barometer for me when telling doctors what Kevin was able to do and not do at a given age. Lauren has always been Kevin’s biggest supporter. It has been pretty neat to see how Lauren has pitched in with Kevin’s home VT sessions. Lauren has done VT with Kevin in the basement to support him. Lauren has also learned how to oversee many of the VT exercises and has helped me supervise Kevin’s “basement sessions.” Basement VT sessions have been a family affair.
I didn’t sleep a lot last night as I thought about our “eight year medical odyssey.” I still feel a lot of frustration that Vision Therapy was not recommended for Kevin a lot earlier. However, I choose to view the positive side of the coin: that we eventually did find VT for Kevin. I know that there are numerous people out there today who could benefit from VT, but they don’t know it exists. They are in the same situation I was less than a year ago. So rather than be upset or frustrated about the amount of time it took for us to find Vision Therapy for Kevin, I would like to help others find it and simply share Kevin’s story with them.
I hope Dr. X understands how important and valuable Vision Therapy is. It changes lives!
On behalf of the Sikes family, I thank you for all you have done for us!
Russ Sikes, Kevin’s parent
Before Vision Therapy, tears were a daily part of school for Rachel and mom. Once we started therapy, the tears and frustration were gone. Even the knowledge that we could “fix” the problem helped.
Things we never noticed, or thought about, have greatly improved as well. Things like coordination, left/right knowledge and visualization; things we had written off as being “that’s just Rachel” have greatly improved. We remember her trying to play basketball and she had such a hard time. Within weeks of Vision Therapy her basketball skills improved so much the coaches were amazed.
We are happy we decided to put Rachel through Vision Therapy. We will admit we cannot wait to see what six more months of therapy will bring.
Christine J., Rachel’s parent
Vision Therapy has lifted an amazing weight off my shoulders. It has allowed me to concentrate more in class by not having to strain my eyes to the point where I can’t see or stand to keep my eyes open to pay attention. For the sports aspect of this therapy, it has allowed me to focus on the baseball while hitting more easily. I have improved my shooting abilities in basketball and have improved my hand-eye coordination. I would highly recommend this therapy to anyone struggling at doing and seeing what others find natural.
Since Vision Therapy, Jessica has seen great changes in her ability to play soccer. She has become more confident in her playing. Her coordination is so much better. Before Vision Therapy, Jessica just stood around in mid-field, but now she is a vital part of the team.
We have also seen some nice changes in regards to Jessica’s behavior during homework time. She is no longer having headaches in the afternoon after school, and she is getting her homework done in a more timely fashion. Jessica has not discovered the magic of reading yet, but I believe that will come with time. We discovered her vision problem during her teenage years, so her bad experiences with reading have yet to be overcome.
I would highly recommend Vision Therapy for someone who is considering this service. We are so thankful for Dr. X and his staff. This is hard work, but Jessica will tell you that she saw immediate results from her therapy.
Leigh Ellen Lively, Jessica’s parent, 2/25/03
Lindsey is so much happier after Vision Therapy. She has been really struggling in school, but we are watching a turn around this year. Lindsey is beginning to love reading. She used to struggle to finish a book, but now she is reading two books a week. Her reading comprehension is improving by leaps and bounds!
Lindsey has always been very active in school and sports, but I’ve seen such a change in her spirit this year. She’s more confident of all her abilities. She is much more coordinated in her sports. She almost always missed the goal in soccer, because she couldn’t line the ball up with the goal. That is not a problem anymore. She is doing really well right now in basketball. It is so nice to have my happy child back!
Both of my girls have benefited greatly from Vision Therapy. We were skeptical at first, but I’m so glad that we had both our girls treated. They are on their way to success in all walks of their lives. Thank you.
Leigh Ellen Lively, Lindsey’s parent,
Since Vision Therapy, I have been able to throw a baseball and before I started therapy, I wasn’t able to do even that. I am also able to write a paper for school with minor mistakes. My Bat mitzvah was on May 4th and that came very easy to me.
Thanks to Dr. X, I am able to do all kinds of sports and get better grades in school. Vision Therapy is a great service. It helped me and it can help others.
Aly Grushkin, young patient,
Simon’s coordination is much better. We are continuing to overcome fine-motor problems.
Simon Toffell’s Parents
Our daughter is a very good student who used to breeze through all her assignments except those requiring extensive reading. Long history or science assignments caused her great anxiety and took a long, long time to accomplish. Since she had Vision Therapy, she has been handling her reading packets easily and ” best of all ” happily. She has easily reduced her homework time to an hour! Similarly, she is a good athlete ” a gymnast and a swimmer ” who could never make any team sport requiring hand-eye coordination. She now feels comfortable pitching, and catching, and making baskets. Finally, she no longer gets car sick. Vision Therapy is the greatest.
Daughter’s name withheld by parent request
Prior to Vision Therapy, Hans’ performance in school and sports was suffering. His coordination was really off. When he went to catch a baseball, he missed a lot of them due to what looked like a major delay problems.
After several months of Vision Therapy and very little baseball practice during the winter months, he went to spring tryouts where he didn’t miss a pop fly. Our recreation director made the comment that he’d never seen so much improvement in any player from one season to the next.
Academically, the big improvement has been in the classroom. He was having a lot of difficulty keeping up with the class because it took him a lot longer to focus on the board after focusing on desk work and vice-versa. It only took a couple of months of therapy and he reported that the vision delay was gone. Vision Therapy has been hugely beneficial to Hans’ development.
Sarah B., Hans’ parent,
We are amazed by David’s improvement. Vision Therapy has changed his everyday life. Before Vision Therapy, David could not even catch a ball and now he is playing flag football and is much more active.
by Marcia and Ted Shuck, David’s parents
The doctor wrote the following comments about David Shuck, age 9:
Problems prior to Vision Therapy:
Reading and writing difficulties
Fine motor difficulty
Avoided gross motor activities
Disparities in psycho-educational testing indicated possible visual perceptual motor deficit
Benefits of Vision Therapy:
IQ increased significantly
Improvement in all visual area
Writing has improved
His work has more detail
Able to do more difficult puzzles
Reading fluency improved
When my son Paul graduated from sixth grade, I noticed that his eyesight was deteriorating. This loss of visual acuity would be particularly critical since he is heavily involved in baseball, where good eyesight is one of the keys to success.
When I had Paul’s eyesight tested at Dr. X’s office, my fears were confirmed; his eyesight was not 20/20 and there were problems. We were informed that eye tracking/eye training could be a viable alternative in lieu of wearing glasses. Paul undertook two six-week courses of Visual Therapy for eye tracking. At the end of the intensive training, an eye exam confirmed that he had 20/20 or better eyesight. His increased visual acuity was also confirmed by his success in baseball. The eye tracking helped him follow and focus on the flight of the ball, critical for both batting and catching.
In the subsequent year and a half, he has grown tremendously, and his eyesight was again beginning to deteriorate. Another round of Visual Therapy has again rectified the problem. I believe that these follow-up sessions will be necessary as long as he is growing. However, Visual Therapy sessions are a small price to pay for the excellent vision and freedom from glasses that is the result. The therapy not only helped his vision, but has helped his athletic performance and concentration as well. I recommend the program highly for vision repair as well as athletic performance.
Paul A. Ferrari, Paul’s parent,
Before Vision Therapy, Dustin hated any activity that dealt with a ball of any sorts. Roller-skating, bicycle riding, climbing trees … all came naturally for him. However, if you threw a ball at him, nine out of every ten times it would hit him in the face. On the tenth, he would just plain miss it. Now Dusty can’t get enough of ball games and the thought of the ball getting away from him is just too much for him to handle. You would think that he was getting the salary of a professional ball player the way he dives for it.
This is one aspect of the therapy that we wish had not been tampered with. Pants generally have a life span of two days before we’re mending them with iron-on patches. At this rate, keeping this child properly clothed may wind up being more costly than the vision therapy.
Mrs. Boxer, Dustin’s mother
Evelyn’s eyes had always seemed “odd” to me, as if they weren’t focusing properly. I took her to two pediatric ophthalmologists when she was 2 and 4 years of age, who both said that her eye health and vision were fine and that I had nothing to worry about.
When Evelyn was 5 years old, we came to Dr. X, who diagnosed that Evelyn had poor vision skills. Evelyn was poor at judging where she and things around her were in space. She was always bumping into door frames, people, etc. and was afraid to ride on her bike. After 9 months of working with Dr. X, Evelyn is now a year ahead of her chronological age in vision skills! She takes in her environment efficiently and moves much more confidently through space. Her eyes seem normal to me now.
Mom of Evelyn (age 5), diagnosed with Autism
Source: Hand-Eye Coordination
Please note: In-office therapy under the direction of a Behavioral Optometrist using prisms, filters and lenses, as used with our patients, is far more effective than home-based therapy.