There are no exercises that have been proven to improve astigmatism, according to AllAboutVision.com. Most optometrists and ophthamologists consider all eye exercise programs that purportedly improve astigmatism to be ineffective. The American Vision Institute, which sold the See Clearly Method exercise program, was sued for making false claims in its advertising.
Astigmatism causes blurry vision due to an irregularly shaped cornea, which prevents the eye from focusing properly, explains AllAboutVision.com. Exercising the eye's muscles cannot improve astigmatism because no exercise can change the shape of the cornea or the lens.
Promoters of eye exercise programs, including the See Clearly Method, claim that extended periods of close reading cause eye fatigue and lead to refractive disorders such as astigmatism, notes AllAboutVision.com. Exercising the muscles that control the eye's focusing makes them more flexible and thereby improves vision, proponents assert.
Sales of the See Clearly Method ended after consumers sued the American Vision Institute for making false claims about the effectiveness of the program, according to AllAboutVision.com. In November 2006 an Iowa district court ordered the company to pay $200,000 in restitution to consumers who bought the program. Although there is no evidence that eye exercises are effective, they are also unlikely to cause harm.