In alternative therapy vision care assumes that the muscles of the eyes, like the rest of those all over the body, must be exercised to remain healthy. We naturally did that as children when we played games, like ball games, running etc. These involved complex eye movements. However, these days, with even children confined to the desk, TV, or media (computer, electronic games) that involves only a confined strain by the eyes the muscles within the eye socket are not worked out. Reworking them, even with gentle movements, including peripheral ones, can help contain degenerating sight.
A few poses that may be safely practiced to help maintain eye sight:
Trataka (Yogic focusing exercise)
Hold your right hand in front of you. Extend the thumb, folding back other fingers lightly. Ensure hand is at eye level. Look at thumbnail. Then switch focus to nose tip. Back at right thumbnail, then switching focus to nose tip. This is one round. Rest your eyes. Do palming (see above). Do up to five rounds. Then switch hands, to do for left hand. Do palming after each round.
Benefits: This helps with the eye's ability to switch focus from distant to close viewing. Most problems, according to yogic occur when the eye muscles slacken and do not accommodate this important skill. Unlike with reading a book, staring at a computer screen reduces our vision skills, creating eye problems. This exercise rectifies this. Plus, when done regularly can boost mental focus. It is also advised for insomniacs.
Avoid: If having glaucoma or cataract.
Rub palms together. Place them gently on closed eye-lids so the cups of the hand cover the eye-lids. The palms should feel the eye socket. This would ensure that your holding the hand over the eye in a correct position. There should be no pressure. This is called palming and may be practiced several times during the day for a quick rest, not just for the eyes but for the mind too. If the duration of the final hold (of palm over eyelid) is lengthened and if palming is done several times during the day, it is believed that eye problems will be controlled.
Benefits: It soothes eyes strained by an effort to see. Also, keeping the eyes in a dark, soothing mode creates a healing impact by tweaking the master glands, like pineal gland, which reacts to excessive exposure to light or artificial lighting by hitting sleep etc. In yogic eye exercises palming is seen as the most important of healing exercises.