Compared to the hundreds of dollars I've spent on eyeglasses, eighteen dollars to read about improving eyesight (to the point where eyeglasses aren't needed--truly!), seems to be a bit of a paradox. Many optometrists have a negative view of Bates' teaching. The reading material will help you remember and put those (and other) good eye habits into practice. =====UPDATE on June 29, 2010:===== I remember leaving a(n Amazon.com) review some time ago on this book, and am going to update it with the following comment. I started off around -7.25 (both eyes) when I chanced upon this book on Amazon. Why, because of applying what the book/method teaches/suggest, which MAINLY is to: 1) not stare 2) not strain 3) reduce stress (mental and tangible) -4.00 and over is considered "high myopia," so I'd like to drop it down to -4.00 at least.
Like most things, it takes work.
Read the book to learn how to easily apply shifting and other methods to improve the eyesight. I attended the Author Thomas Quackenbush's Natural Vision Improvement class in 1999 in San Francisco, CA after reading, studying his book 'Relearning To See-Improve Your Eyesight Naturally' in 1997. He has taught Natural Eyesight Improvement since 1983, trained thousands of students and hundreds of teachers. I have used the Bates Method since 1974, age 17 to keep my eyesight clear. In 1996 at age 40 I developed unclear close, reading vision; small print, objects at about 7 inches and closer were blurry. I tried the usual Bates Method of Natural Eyesight Improvement and it worked. Also see a natural magnifying effect placing a small object or tiny fine print up close to the eyes, 1/4th inch almost touching the eyelashes and see it clear; like when I was a kid and would look at a clear colored marble close to the eye and see tiny parts inside the glass or like a jeweler does when inspecting a diamond without a magnifying glass. I practice reading the fine print as Dr. Bates describes and shifting point to point, tiny part to tiny part on the details in the small stones Tom gave us in his class or on a flower, leaf, piece of cloth... I continue to use this natural eyesight method and the fine print directions to keep my reading vision, close and distant vision clear. The person applies use of normal vision functions as easy, relaxed natural vision habits all the time, all day long. With some practice, this occurs on its own, the normal eye, visual system function occurring automatically, maintaining clear eyesight. Before taking the class, reading this book I only understood, used basic shifting; moving the eyes, (visual attention) side to side, top and bottom on an object to see it clear. Imitating, practicing this returns the eyes, eyesight to normal function. Go to Chapter 9, Part 3 to dive right into Natural Eyesight Improvement Training; The Three Principles of Natural Vision; MOVEMENT, CENTRALIZATION AND RELAXATION. When we uncovered and opened our eyes many people, including myself experienced clear or improved sight. Relaxation of the shoulders, neck, correct posture, clear eyesight at the computer, healthy full spectrum sunlight, indoor light, how to work with an eye doctor to obtain freedom from glasses and other information is included. The Bates method also corrected a wandering eye, double vision, blur and astigmatism condition I experienced in 2009-2011 due to a neck and back injury caused by a dishonest chiropractor throwing my neck, spine, hip, vertebrae, bones out of alignment, mis-aligned neck vertebrae C-1, 2, 4, 6, others along the shoulder area, T1... Natural Eyesight Improvement brought the vision back to 100% clear! and even the spine, back, pulling, tension on the spinal cord, brain stem can affect the eye muscles, brain/visual system, clarity of vision. Dr. Bates proved that tension in the outer eye muscles causes pressure, tension, pulling on/in the eyeball, alters its shape and focus of light rays, clarity of vision. He also proved that relaxation of the muscles returns the eye to normal shape, correct focus of light rays and clear vision. Eye doctors cannot prescribe for me because the vision is clear with use of the Bates Method.
This book helped my improve my prescription from -10.5 to -6.5 Diopters. The kind of vision problems we *can't* fix are those caused by the shape of our eyeballs. But if your vision is much worse (like mine), then you'll probably be able to make vast improvements, but it might be that hardware problems could keep you from attaining 20/20.
I see it clearly now, and even also the thin wires holding it in place.
The Bates method involves * Movement: eyes should always be in motion, never fixed on anything * Centralization: keep looking at only one thing at a time * Relaxation: dont strain The book includes suggestions for better shifting (sketch lines with your eyes), breathing (he likes yawning), blinking (do it more).
If you're desperate to not wear glasses, you might find you can not wear them more comfortably than you might expect, but any variations in your vision will not be a result of doing eye exercises.
After reading this, I did request reduced prescriptions from my optomitrist, and twice in a row now, I've returned to the optomitrist to find that I see 20/20 with the reduced prescription.