10 Super Simple Yoga Exercises For Tired Eyes
Today the screen, be it a laptop, computer, smart phone or a tablet, has unalterably entered our lives. On an average, an American spends almost half a day staring at the screen. Then it is not hard to imagine the tremendous repercussions this may have on the health of our eyes.
The various problems that arise from viewing screens for long stretches of time are clubbed under Computer Vision Syndrome or CVS. Some of its symptoms include-irritation, dryness, blurred vision, red eyes, back pain and headaches.
Eye Muscles At Work
Repetitive motion injuries like CVS are caused by over working particular muscles day in and day out. When you are staring at your computer screens, what you essentially do is, focus your vision on different elements on the screen. Then you look and read from other sources and then go back to the computer screens. This requires your eye muscles to refocus on the screen. This is a repetitive motion cycle that your eye muscles are subjected to each day. The eye muscles are further strained from the glare on the screen. The muscles have to work harder due to improper positioning of the monitor. Glare can be direct or indirect- where the light bounces off into your eyes from the screen. All these are reasons why you experience an eye fatigue at the end of a work day.
Today we give you simple yet highly effective Yogic exercises or Sukshma Yoga to relax the strained eye muscles, reduce the heaviness and give deep rest for your eyes, eye muscles and the region around it.
A) Vertical eye movement (up and down)
- Keep your body, neck and head still
- Keep your head straight and in the front, not sunk into your shoulders or pressed backwards.
- Taking a deep and slow breath in, take your eye balls up. Look towards your eye brows.
- Breathing out, bring them down and look towards the tip of your nose.
- Repeat this 5-7 times.
B) Horizontal eye movements (right and left)
- Breathing in, look at your right side.
- Breathing out bring your sight back to the center.
- Breathing in, look at your left side.
- Breathing out, bring your sight back to the front.
- Repeat the cycles on each side about 5-7 times
C) Eye rotations
- Take a deep breath in and look up
- As you breathe out, rotate your eye balls from right to left (5-7 times)
- Breathing in, look up.
- Breathing out, rotate your eye balls from left to right (5-7 times)
IMPORTANT: Sync your breath with each and every rotation to maximize the benefit of these exercises. This will enhance your awareness, making you centered and relaxed.
D) Gazing at the index finger
- Take your hand to your eye level and point out your index finger in front of your eyes in the line of your eye brows. Gap between eye brows and index finger should be 2-3 inches.
- Fix your gaze on the tip of the index finger
- Breathe in and take your index finger away from your eye brows and then move your index finger to the right. Let the gaze follow the tip of the index finger.
- Breathe out and come to the center bringing your hands to the original position in front of your eyes.
- Repeat the cycle with left finger (3-5 times each side)
E) Open and shut
- Breathing in, open the eyes wider apart
- As you breathe out, squeeze it tightly shut
- Repeat this cycle 3-5 times
F) Rotations with eyes shut
- Breathing in Close your eyes.
- Breathing out, rotate your eye balls right to left and left to right while keeping your eyes shut.
G) Eyebrow massage
- Place your thumbs under the eye brows and index fingers over the eye brows, holding your eye brows lightly.
- While breathing in and out, gently press and move the two fingers along the eye brows to the edges of the eye brows. (Repeat it 3-5 times)
H) Eye orbit massage
- Take the right index finger and place it on the harder part of the nasal bone between the two eye brows.
- Take a deep breath in and as you breathe out, lightly press and move the finger along the area below the lower eye lid (lower part of the orbit of an eye) end to end. (Repeat it 3-5 times)
- Take a deep breath in and close your eyes.
- While breathing out, hold the skin over the eyes and pinch it lightly for about 30 seconds
J) Keep your eyes closed for 2-3 minutes
- While keeping your eyes closed, you can gently get ready for a guided meditation known to be soothing and relaxing for your body and mind- Blossom In Smile
- Every 15-30 minutes, look far and away from where in front of the screen for about 5 seconds.
- Wash your face every one hour (only with water)
- Shut your eyes and place cucumber slices on the skin over the eyes.
- Jal Neti- For those who have been practicing Yoga regularly can also go for the Jal Neti method of nasal cleansing that directly benefits the eye ducts and vision. It improves the blood circulation in your eye area too.
- Have food rich in vitamin c- fresh veggies like spinach, fruits- oranges, pineapple, grapes, citrus fruits, carrot and spinach juice.
- According to some researchers, your screen should be around 25 inches away from your face and slightly below the eye level. The eyes are naturally placed to see at such a level. Placing the monitor and having to see anywhere above this, will strain the eye muscles for no good reason.
(With inputs from Jai Desai, Sri Sri Yoga Teacher, and a young, dynamic yoga enthusiast for over a decade)