Tag Archives: NYT

Toward Better Sight

This week a New York Times article described a recent study showing how brain exercises could help older citizens improve their eyesight.

The article described behavioral exercises, where people were shown various shapes against a confusing background, forcing the subjects to concentrate on the target images. The test results showed that after just a few trials (5 in most cases) the subjects improved their contrast sensitivity, or their ability to detect when one image started and another began.

Meir Schneider

Meir Schneider, Ph. D.

This can be a problem for seniors trying to negotiate stairs, but unable to tell where one step ends and another begins.

The article drew my attention because it pointed out the validity of an approach that a San Francisco eye care center has been preaching for years.

Meir Schneider, Ph. D. has been running the School for Self Healing in the Outer Sunset for years. He focuses on retraining brain and eye ‘muscles’ to heal themselves and correct vision problems. Through a series of exercises, Schneider’s rather unorthodox techniques have been able to help patients with debilitating  issues – like his own near blindness –  restore their eyesight.

Schneider, an Israeli by birth, also runs centers in Brazil, Israel and London and has trained practitioners who now run their own facilities in Texas and Petaluma, California.

His techniques are focused on exercises, which take advantage of the human body’s natural ability to heal itself. In the scientific terms of the New York Times article, this brain plasticity, simply trains new portions of the brain to take over for damaged areas.

Reliance on prescription glasses is a ‘last resort’ for Meir who believes that with the right exercise, all eyesight can be corrected naturally.

I’ve been going to his classes in San Francisco for years and have met people from all over the world who flock to him for one reason: His system works.