As anyone familiar with baseball knows, the batter’s job is to hit the ball into play (preferably not directly to any opposing player) and enable his team to score runs. In order to accomplish this task, he has to be able to hit a ball only a couple inches in diameter which is being thrown toward him from just over 60 feet away at speeds sometimes exceeding 100 miles per hour. To make matters worse, the ball can have various types of movement as it speeds toward him, and the time a batter has to react and decide whether or not to swing is measured in milliseconds.
Important skills for a batter include:
Pitchers are the main enemy of the batter, as they attempt to get them out either via a strikeout or a hit right to a fielder. While the pitcher’s objective is very different, however, visual skills are also vital to their success as well. The pitcher must throw the baseball with pinpoint accuracy to the small target of the catcher’s mitt, and at the same time, make it as difficult as possible for the batter to hit.
Important skills for a pitcher include:
Outfielders have a lot to manage. They’re responsible for dealing with anything hit into the outfield, whether in the air or on the ground. Especially with fly balls, there is a lot that goes into tracking it and making the catch. An outfielder also has to throw the ball back into the infield, often quickly and with accuracy.
Important skills for an outfielder include:
The catcher occupies a unique role on a baseball team, with his primary role being to coordinate pitching strategy with the pitcher, and to catch (or at least block) everything the pitcher throws. In addition, the catcher has to keep an eye on any baserunners, so he is ready to act if one tries to steal a base.
Important skills for a catcher include:
An infielder’s tasks require extremely high levels of precision and quick reaction times, whether to field a sharply hit ground ball or line drive, or to make an accurate throw to a base.
Important skills for an infielder include:
In one recent study, it was found that 77% of major league baseball players had vision greater than 20/20, but there is more to vision than this.
Another study, done with the University of Cincinnati baseball team, showed that after only six weeks of vision training, there were drastic improvements among the players. The team batting average rose by 34 points, a greater improvement than that of other teams in the league, while errors decreased by 15%. In a very competitive league, this level of improvement can mean the difference between a mediocre season and a championship one.
Dr. Ikeda, FCOVD, DPNAP, is a leading optometrist in the field of neuro optometric rehabilitation and developmental optometry. He has made profound contributions to the field over the years and uses these expertise to provide the highest quality of eye care to his patients. He was Past-President of the Optometric Extension Program Foundation (OEPF) and of the Neuro-Optometric Rehabilitation Association (NORA). He received the “Founding Fathers Medal” for his continued service to NORA and he was recognized as “Physician of the Year” by the Rehabilitation Nurses Society. He is a clinical associate professor of the Western University of Health Sciences College of Optometry and was inducted as a Distinguished Practitioner into the National Academies of Practice (Optometry Academy).