Most people have never really thought about their hand eye coordination skills, it doesn’t seem like something that would be important. Parents sometimes consider it when their children are young because it’s a skill that they need to develop but once you get to be an adult, you probably forget all about it. Your hand eye coordination skills are just as important, if not more so when you’re an adult. There are loads of different things that you would never realize are affected by your hand eye coordination so it’s important to train those skills regularly. Playing sports is one of the best ways to do this.
What Is Hand Eye Coordination?
Hand eye coordination refers to the way in which your brain processes information from your eyes and then transfers that into the movements that your hand makes. People often think that it just refers to things like throwing and catching but really it affects almost anything that you do with your hands. If you don’t hone those skills then your brain will be slow at processing information and then reacting to it.
Why Is It Important?
In extreme cases, bad hand eye coordination skills could lead to a condition called dyspraxia. This usually results in an inability to perform basic tasks like tying your shoes and typing, which can obviously have a big impact on your life. That’s only a worst case scenario but having good hand eye coordination can improve your skills in all sorts of areas. Typing is something that most of us do on a regular basis, especially at work so having better coordination can seriously improve your productivity. It has also been suggested by researchers that it could improve your strategic thinking skills. This is because your brain sees an object and then processes the information in order for your hand to interact with it, that process involves a lot of foresight which can help to improve your strategic thinking abilities. This is going to help you in all areas of your life. As you age, your hand eye coordination starts to get increasingly worse so keeping on top of it is incredibly important. If you’re worried about it, try out these sports and activities to keep your brain healthy.
You wouldn’t think that bingo is good for your health but there have been studies done on it. They showed that people that were playing bingo for extended periods scored significantly higher in hand eye coordination tests than the group that hadn’t been playing bingo. It might not be the most exciting activity but it is popular amongst the older generation so maybe it’s time for you to get into playing bingo.
Tennis is one of the best sports for hand eye coordination because the ball is incredibly fast moving, but even better than tennis is table tennis. Table tennis is on a much smaller scale so the level of accuracy that you need to display is a lot higher. The smaller table also means that your reactions need to be much quicker than in a normal game of tennis. You can play with somebody else but if you’re on your own then just put one half of the table up and play against yourself, the benefits will still be the same.
Golf is all about hand eye coordination, without it, you won’t get anywhere near a good swing. If you’re going to play golf, you need patience because it takes a bit of time before you’ll get good. When you’re starting out, a good set of clubs is the first thing you should be looking for. Get yourself a taylormade driver for high handicapper which is designed to help beginners with their swing. It should help you improve your game. Golf is great for coordination because you will be able to see the improvements that you’re making in real time as your swing gets better and better.
Fencing is another sport that requires great precision so you’re likely to see massive improvements in your hand eye coordination in a short period of time. Because you’re so close to your opponent, your reaction times need to be incredibly fast, while making precise movements with your hand. The combination of accuracy and speed makes fencing a brilliant sport for hand eye coordination as well as a good way to stay fit at the same time. Finding a fencing club can be difficult but you can get the same benefits by practicing at home on your own with a dummy.
Water polo isn’t a very common sport but if you can find a local team, it’s worth joining. It has so many great benefits because it’s one of the most intensive sports out there. You’ll have to tread water and swim throughout so the cardio benefits are massive. Throwing and catching are both great ways to improve hand eye coordination but doing them at the same time as trying to tread water and swim makes it far more difficult, so the coordination improvements are even bigger than usual.
Basketball is probably the best ball sport to play when it comes to training your hand eye coordination skills. If you’re playing football, you’ll practice your coordination when you throw and catch but you’ll be running with the ball. Constantly dribbling in basketball means that you’ll be honing your skills for the entire game. Shooting also takes a huge amount of coordination so every aspect of the game is beneficial for your brain health.
As well as sports, there are plenty of simple exercises that you can do to quickly improve your hand eye coordination skills.
If you can’t get out to play any sports, a simple game of catch will do just fine. Start off at a short distance and gradually get further and further away. You’ll find that you’ll be better and better each time you play and you’ll be able to catch from further away. If you don’t have anybody else to play, you can just bounce the ball off a wall and catch it that way. If you really want to give yourself a challenge, try bouncing a football off the wall, it won’t bounce straight so catching it at different angles will be great coordination training.
Circus skills aren’t likely to be top of your list when it comes to ways to help keep your brain healthy, but most of them involve serious hand eye coordination skills. Juggling is probably the best thing that you can do. Trying to keep your eyes on multiple balls at the same time is a big challenge and if you can manage it, it’ll help to keep your brain in good shape. Start off simple with two balls and once you’ve mastered that, you can move onto more. For an even bigger challenge, try juggling with different objects that are more difficult to catch
When you’re trying to train your coordination skills, people tend to focus more heavily on their hands, but the eyes are just as important. One simple way of exercising your eyes is to take two objects with a good amount of detail on them. Place one object about a foot away from you and the other about ten foot away. Switch your focus between the two every few seconds and try to pick out as many details as you can. Doing this for a few minutes every couple of days will keep you coordination skills honed.