Visual Tracking – The ability to look at something and follow it as it moves or the ability to track a line, such as in reading.
Visual tracking is one of the basic skills needed for learning. A weakness here can cause difficulty in reading, writing, or math. This is not a problem with vision or a problem with the eyes themselves. Instead, it is primarily a symptom of weak eye muscles. Eye motions may lack smoothness causing vision to be "jiggly". This can be a big contributor to dyslexia symptoms.
Children who have visual tracking problems are also likely to have vestibular problems. That it is why it is important to also do proprioception exercises as well as eye tracking exercises to correct the problem.
Watching too much television or playing handheld video games can contribute to this problem. This is because the eyes stay focussed at one focal length for long periods of time.
Visual Tracking and Reading
Some students, especially dyslexics, often complain of letters or words jumping around. This comes in several forms such as letters moving within words (visual dyslexia) or letters jumping from one word to another (attentional dyslexia). Poor visual tracking is at least partially to blame for this phenomena.
Other students have difficulty following a line of text. They easily lose their place when reading or get confused. This is also caused by a visual tracking problem.
Visual Tracking and Math
Visual tracking issues may also cause difficulty in math. Students may have difficulty lining up numbers vertically or horizontally. They may have attention span difficulties. Flipping or jumping around of numbers may occur.
Visual Tracking and Writing
Visual tracking is also a culprit in sloppy handwriting. Children have difficulty following the line and keeping consistent letter sizes. They may skip letters. They may see their own writing as fuzzy or blurred, causing further difficulty.
Related to visual tracking is visual efficiency
To get a complete series of visual tracking exercises, as well as all of the other exercises needed for success in school, get your copy of the Learning Success System.