Elite Vision Critical to Batting Success - Smart Vision Labs Clinical Study

New Study reveals the SVOne Autorefractor successfully measures the small yet significant refractive errors of professional baseball players.

New York, NY – July 5, 2017, Smart Vision Labs (https://www.smartvisionlabs.com/) announced today the release of their latest clinical study on The Refractive Error of Professional Baseball Players, The study concludes that the SVOne wavefront autorefraction system is effective in detecting extremely small, but important, refractive errors in professional baseball players.

According to the study, hitting a baseball is one of the most difficult activities in sports. Previous research has found that professional baseball players have visual acuity of approximately 20/12. In comparison, the visual acuity for the general population is two lines worse, or 20/20. Clear and sharp vision is extremely important for a batter to have the best chance to actually hit the ball successfully. Small deviations in the refraction of the eye can, reduce vision and thus negatively impact the performance of a baseball player.

Even a small refractive error, left uncorrected, could decrease vision to the “normal” 20/20 level (or perhaps even worse), which is likely insufficient to allow optimal batting performance. Additionally, the impact of any refractive error, if present, on the batter’s visual function is often greater than what is seen in the average population with a similar refractive error (authors’’ clinical experience).

The baseball, barely 3 inches in diameter, is often thrown at speeds approaching 100 mph from a distance of 60 feet 6 inches. The batter must predict, based upon the initial trajectory of the ball as well as the ball’s spin, where and when it will cross the plate allowing him to strike it with a wooden bat a mere 2.75 inches in diameter. It is not difficult to understand why hitting a baseball is often termed the most difficult task in all of sports and why excellent visual function is required for success. In fact, baseball is one of the rare times in life when you are considered highly skilled for being successful only 30% of the time.

“We are excited by the results of this study” said Yaopeng Zhou, Smart Vision Labs, CEO and Co-Founder. “This is the 3rd clinical study to validate the accuracy of our device and its ability to pick up on the smallest changes in refraction. Gaining the trust of the teams in this MLB study was an additional vote of confidence.“

“The SVOne is extremely accurate and an exceptional tool to measure vision correction”, said Daniel M. Laby, MD; Director of the Sports and Performance Vision Center at the SUNY College of Optometry. The device is able to detect extremely small focusing errors which can make a huge difference in professional ball player’s success.”

Methodology
The study was lead by Daniel M. Laby, MD, Director of the Sports and Performance Vision Center at the SUNY College of Optometry In New York City. The study included 608 MLB players (both minor and major league), from five teams, during the 2016 spring training season. All MLB players were males. Of the 608 players screened, 557 had autorefraction performed (51 players did not complete autorefraction due to their unavailability or not being able to complete the test). Players who had refractive surgery (25) or players who were wearing contact lenses at the time of their screening (116) were not considered eligible for analysis. Additionally, three (3) players were not entered properly into the autorefraction database and could not be identified, and thus included, in the analysis. Thus, a total of 413 players were deemed eligible for final inclusion in the study analysis. Screening took place in a dedicated room at each team’s spring training facility. Screening consisted of a brief ocular history followed by autorefraction using the Smart Vision Labs SVOne autorefractor, other tests of vision (OptimEYEs), hand-eye coordination and reaction time (SVT) as well as visual concentration and multiple object tracking (Neurotracker) were also performed.

This study, as well as all of the Smart Vision Labs published clinical studies can be found here:
https://www.smartvisionlabs.com/how-it-works/accuracy/

In addition to baseball, additional studies have been conducted involving other sports which highlight the relationship between elite vision and performance. A study recently performed in the UK, published on June 8, 2017 in Science and Medicine in Football, concludes that the vision of soccer players is superior to that of healthy non-athletes. These results were confirmed in an additional study from the John Moores University, Liverpool in cricketers.

About Smart Vision Labs

Smart Vision Labs is making vision care less expensive, less complicated, and more accessible. Using the SVone Autorefractor doctors and optical stores can use the power of wavefront aberrometry to provide accurate prescriptions for glasses in minutes. Their proprietary technology shrinks expensive, bulky equipment into a portable device that can be adapted to both a stand alone autorefractor as well as a telemedicine platform. Founded in 2013, Smart Vision Labs aims to increase access to vision care by leveraging technology and innovation. Over 60,000 vision tests have been performed to date in 23 countries, including in partnership with numerous nonprofit organizations and NGOs providing eye-care services to underserved populations here in the US, as well as in India, China and Africa.

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