Sports Vision Training for Boxing
Eyes Are Vital in Boxing
Few sports rely on strong vision and visual skills as much as boxing — not only for success, but for survival. Swing and miss on a curveball? That’s just one strike. Don’t anticipate a right cross to the noggin, and you’re down for the count … or worse.
But even that right cross is only one of the myriad signals that boxers must visually account for during a match. On offense, a boxer constantly sizes up an opponent, seeking information on weaknesses to exploit. On defense, a boxer must closely observe an opponent’s every move, gesture, and muscle twitch to gauge danger, recognize feints, and prepare protection.
Having 20/20 vision is an advantage for a boxer, but having less-than-stellar visual skills can erase this advantage.
Boxing’s Visual Skills
Improving your performance and safety in the ring requires more than peak physical fitness, eyesight, strength, training, and smart nutrition. It requires superb visual skills: the ability of the eyes and brain to work together to block a punch or time your jab.
Visual skills consistently employed in boxing include:
- hand-eye coordination: the eyes and body working in tandem to execute a move
- depth perception: understanding how far away something is, like a clenched fist
- eye mobility: tracking an opponent’s every move
- peripheral vision: seeing to each side while looking straight ahead
- visualization: envisioning success
At The Sports Vision Center at Advanced Eye Care we will create a customized program to hone the visual skills you need most to succeed as a boxer. One visual-skill exercise that’s well known to boxers is gazing straight ahead while bobbing one’s head back and forth in a vertical U shape to simulate ducking an opponent’s punches to the head. We will work with you in the office to improve these visual skills, then provide exercises to help you develop visual skills at home.
If you box, first visit Rebecca St. Jean, O.D. and Elicia Miller, O.D. for a thorough examination to ensure that your eyesight accords with the rigors of the sport and for us to evaluate your visual skills. The Sports Vision Center at Advanced Eye Care serves boxers and other athletes in South Charleston, Davis Creek, Hillsdale, Institute, and throughout West Virginia. Give yourself a fighting chance.