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Thread: Children: Being Outdoors vs. Nearsightedness?

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    Children: Being Outdoors vs. Nearsightedness?

    Another Reason to Send Kids Outside: It’s Good for Their Eyes
    It’s hard to argue with the idea that getting kids outside is important for their health. The American Academy of Pediatrics encourages doctors to “write a prescription for play” and says that outdoor play in particular is important for “motor, cognitive, social, and linguistic” skills, as well as exercise. But another important benefit of outdoor play is mostly ignored: what it can do for kids’ eyesight.

    Nearsightedness has become more common over the past few decades, both in the United States and elsewhere, and scientists aren’t sure why. But they do know that sending your kid outside can help prevent it.

    ...
    How exactly being outdoors protects kids’ eyes is a bit of a mystery. The effect seems to be independent of how much time kids spend on near work — it’s not just that more time outside equals less time reading. But the answer might be as simple as the amount of light kids get, Berntsen says. Or it might have to do with having distant objects in their field of vision, instead of being indoors, where everything is at close range. Another hypothesis involves dopamine: Bright light causes the release of dopamine in the eye, which may tell the eyeball to stop growing.
    I decided to check this article's assertions, and I found:
    A New AMA Policy – More Time Spent Outdoors May Reduce the Risk of Kids’ Nearsightedness
    Outdoor Activity Protects Against Childhood Myopia—Let the Sun Shine In | Ophthalmology | JAMA Pediatrics | JAMA Network

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    Eyes focus using muscles. Sounds like a form of atrophy. Environment stimulates brain growth.

    Baseball, basketball, T ball, and the rest are probably still the best for kids. The video game industry says games develop had eye coordination. I'd say that is nonsense.

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    Quote Originally Posted by steve_bank View Post
    Eyes focus using muscles. Sounds like a form of atrophy. Environment stimulates brain growth.

    Baseball, basketball, T ball, and the rest are probably still the best for kids. The video game industry says games develop had eye coordination. I'd say that is nonsense.
    There's little question that it helps. That doesn't mean that all that time inside doesn't have downsides also.

    And I don't think atrophy is the right word--it's a failure to develop more than a loss of what was developed.

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    Quote Originally Posted by steve_bank View Post
    Eyes focus using muscles. Sounds like a form of atrophy. Environment stimulates brain growth.

    Baseball, basketball, T ball, and the rest are probably still the best for kids. The video game industry says games develop had eye coordination. I'd say that is nonsense.
    just as much nonsense as the claim that reading books increases literacy. Video games promote problem solving, team work, and eye hand coordination. The last bit more important now-a-days with modern control systems. "joysticks" are not just for games - they are for science, industry, and adjusting your side-view mirrors. That said, it is absolutely true that your eyes need to focus at different distances to remain healthy.... just like needing to stand up once in a while to prevent atrophy of your heart.
    It's pretty much a no-brainer to understand that when it comes to your body, you must use it or lose it.

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    Video games are like masturbation. Instant gratification with no risk. Fail and reset the game.

    You do not learn problem solving with video games, you learn conditioned responses.

    Myself and other engineers in my generation have observed a general decline in independent problem solving in new grads.

    Baseball requires situational awareness in space, what is going on around you, physical conditioning, and hand eye coordination in space. Video games give none of that.

    Games have been linked to short attention spans in kids. Real world problems are worked over time.

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    Quote Originally Posted by steve_bank View Post
    Video games are like masturbation. Instant gratification with no risk. Fail and reset the game.
    such games exist, sure. but they are not very successful outside of the "burning time" genre. In fact, the very core principle of any successful and good video game is a balance between risk and reward... learning that balance, and applying it to strategy and play style. This first statement of yours is highly ironic... opposite of the very foundation of game theory... not even just video games... this is universal.
    You do not learn problem solving with video games, you learn conditioned responses.
    Sure you do. That is like saying you don't learn science with books... the books in the fiction section. All video games are not cut from the same cloth and neither are any other media.
    Baseball requires situational awareness in space, what is going on around you, physical conditioning, and hand eye coordination in space. Video games give none of that.
    I was at a little league game just the other day. It was just a bunch of children standing around a field with one kid in the middle throwing a ball into the dirt over and over again.
    Baseball is just a stupid waste of everyone's time... no one is actually DOING anything at all.
    Also, VR games are spacial, tactile, and highly immersive now-a-days.
    Games have been linked to short attention spans in kids. Real world problems are worked over time.
    video games or worked on over time. Games like tic tac toe might apply to your biased view of all video games, based on... what? Angry Birds?
    There certainly is a segment a mindless video game
    Certainly. And a segment of mindless and pointless sports. And a segment of useless and time wasting books... and movies... and art that makes you go "meh". sometimes it rains out, making "going out to play" a really stupid idea.

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    That is funny. Little League is for giving kids experience in real world team activity, leadership, and developing physical skills.

    Playing baseball is harder than you may think. Same with soccer or tennis.

    Kids who's brains are forming with experience are adopting to an illusion instead of reality. No matter how much video baseball you play, you will not learn the hand eye coordination to catch or hit a ball.

    Sophisticated graphics and twists and turns do not change anything. The last video gane I played was in the early 80s. Today they would still bore me to tears. Learning, reading, growing in knowledge is the nest entertainment there is. It has always been so.

    I'd always rather pick up a text and work problems than play video games. Video games require little effort and give you little in return for the time you spend.

    Average people used to do math problems for fun. Crossword puzzles. Scrabble and Monopoly in retrospect were important for me as a kid. Model building. Construction toys. No video game can provide that.

    Video games for kids are pacifiers. For adults mindless escape. A substitute for real completive activity.

    Since the late 90s the DOD has been reporting that the major of young adults in the case of a national emergency and general call up are mentally and physically unfit for service. That says something.

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    Quote Originally Posted by steve_bank
    The last video gane I played was in the early 80s
    Then you have no foundation to comment. It's like your discussing the leather helmets that football players wear.

    And you can play all the baseball in the world and it will never teach you the fine motor control needed to manipulate a robotic arm with a joystick, or the spacial relationships skill needed to navigate a complex set of hallways... or how to read.... or how to use a hammer to drive a nail. Or how to drive. Baseball is useless.

    Since the late 90s the DOD has been reporting that the major of young adults in the case of a national emergency and general call up are mentally and physically unfit for service. That says something
    The irony in your posts deepen! Since the 2000's, the DoD has been explicitly seeking people with extensive video game experience to operate drones and other modern day equipment.... because they have the skills the military needs today.

    Your point of view on this topic is informed by terribly outdated information that it seems you have not been interested in updating (which is fine - you just don't have a valuable opinion on this particular topic, is all).

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    Interesting that spending time outside would help prevent near-sighted issues.
    Quote Originally Posted by steve_bank View Post
    That is funny. Little League is for giving kids experience in real world team activity, leadership, and developing physical skills.
    You misspelled soccer or hockey or basketball.

    Kids who's brains are forming with experience are adopting to an illusion instead of reality. No matter how much video baseball you play, you will not learn the hand eye coordination to catch or hit a ball.
    Actually FX3 Pinball is actually pretty darn good at modeling the real thing.

    Sophisticated graphics and twists and turns do not change anything. The last video gane I played was in the early 80s. Today they would still bore me to tears. Learning, reading, growing in knowledge is the nest entertainment there is. It has always been so.
    Are we talking about video games and coordination or how you feel about video games? Regardless, I think it helps develop some hand-eye coordination. I wouldn't (and I doubt many would) suggest it is enough for a kid to just play video games.

    Video games for kids are pacifiers. For adults mindless escape. A substitute for real completive activity.
    Yeah... and its fun. Like hiking or going to the zoo.

    Since the late 90s the DOD has been reporting that the major of young adults in the case of a national emergency and general call up are mentally and physically unfit for service. That says something.
    It says those that are fit for service are doing other things.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gun Nut View Post
    Video games promote problem solving, team work, and eye hand coordination.
    Hey, Do have a reference showing causal impact of gaming on actual hand-eye coordination in non-virtual environments? IOW, does it make a person better at catch or hitting an actual baseball?

    All the studies I can find only measure a very specific and narrow type of hand-eye coordination, namely in the same 2-D computer gaming context as the games themselves. IOW, playing one game makes you better at other computer games. There is a critical difference between the type of coordination there versus the "real world". With a computer game, you are not actually coordinating your hand movements toward the visual object. Rather you are making tiny finger movements on a different plane where the direction does not correspond to the actual direction of the object in the visual field. The parts of the motor cortex involved are different for "catching a ball" in a computer game vs. catching and actual ball coming at you. So, it's plausible that gaming has either no or even negative impact on hand-eye coordination outside of virtual environments.

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