Bates Method International

Winter Vision

Getting light to your eyes in winter

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Late Sun with water and silhouetted hills
Late sun on the Fjords of Norway

Now that the nights are drawing in for the northern hemisphere, here are a few tips on keeping your eyes sparkling in the days of winter light.

  • Assuming you're not above the Arctic Circle, try to get at least an hour of natural light into your eyes every day. This means getting outdoors if you can; a lunchtime walk or other exercise is ideal.
  • Eyes adore colour, and when the sun is out in the winter its low angle can bring some fantastic hues into the landscape. Everything takes on a golden tinge, and autumn colours can be spectacular of course: simply connect and engage with what you see in a conscious manner. It's like a long drawn out sunset - and of course if you are further south then you will see these colours for a shorter time at the beginning and end of the day.
  • After rain is also great for colour. Wet plants, leaves, and other surfaces take on a deeper, more saturated intensity, and if the sun comes out after a shower the world can be super vibrant.
  • Snow brings an enormous lift of available light - you may readily recognise that feeling of being 'light-hearted', when you find it has snowed overnight. Having fun in the snow is a natural inclination, perhaps more so for those who are young; but less well known is how valuable the extra light is for your well being, no matter what age you are.
  • And if getting enough light is a real challenge, with long days of dull grey or even no light, then do make use of a good desk lamp or sunning lamp if you have one, remembering to palm after every session. Click on the links for sunning and palming.

More low light tips from the Facebook page:

'Shadows' - A game to play with street lights.

Midnight sun: the beautiful experience of the sun's midnight rays in Norway in Summer - link coming soon.

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About the same time I sewed a hem at night in a black dress, using a fine needle. I suffered a little for this, but not much. I used to practice my exercises at that time and palm faithfully.
Wm H. Bates M.D., Better Eyesight Magazines - a Teacher's experiences, July 1919

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