Editor’s note: Don’t let blindness or low vision steal the joy of engaging and flourishing in a new or longstanding hobby. You will find satisfaction and entertainment while participating, and you’ll reap work-related benefits. The following blog has been updated as of October 2022.
Hobbies as an Individual Who Is Blind or Low Vision
Oh, how I wish we were sitting across from each other, enjoying coffee or a spot of tea. I would ask about your hobbies, how you love spending your time. I would ask about your hobby-related goals that really energize you—maybe finishing reading or writing a book chapter by bedtime, increasing your running pace, completing an artistic or building project, adding to a collection, volunteering on a weekly basis, planting new bulbs, acting in a local play, composing a song, entertaining neighbors for dinner, refurbishing an old desk, increasing your bench-press strength, finishing a television series, or making your own wine.
I’d like to know your tricks and tips for making your hobby accessible to you, a person who is blind or low vision. I bet your ingenuity would teach me a thing or two, and I bet it would inspire others (with and without blindness or low vision) to continue creating, composing, entertaining, refurbishing, volunteering, adding, planning, exercising, pressing, or finishing.
Yes, I’d like to see your work; your skills; your expertise.
But if you’d respond, “Shannon, since losing my vision I haven’t picked back up my hobby” or, “I’ve never actually found activities I love. Maybe if I was fully sighted…,” I’d direct you to APH CareerConnect’s About Hobbies & Recreation That Persons with Vision Loss Participate In section. I’d encourage you to read through the accounts of individuals who are blind or low vision who pursue a variety of pastimes, adventures, and interests. I guarantee you’ll be inspired and entertained when reading.
Among other narratives, you’ll get lost in the tranquility of Jessie Rayl’s garden; you’ll feel your stomach drop as you read Tara Annis’ skydiving experience; you’ll root for Kitty Hevener as she describes the transformation from crippling fear at her first group water-aerobics class, to pure enjoyment of water activities; and you’ll hopefully relate to Max Ivey as he shares his journey of conquering his fear of sharing his creative outlet—singing—with the world.
Don’t let blindness or low vision steal the joy of engaging and flourishing in a new or longstanding hobby. You will find satisfaction and entertainment while participating, and you’ll reap work-related benefits of pursuing hobbies.
- National Blind Sports Week: Running Towards Accessible Sports – FamilyConnect
- High School Clubs Can Improve Your School Experience: A Teen Reflects – CareerConnect (aphcareerconnect.org)
- Knitting—a Beacon of Hope for Blind and Visually Impaired People – VisionAware
- Arts and Crafts After Vision Loss – VisionAware
- Walking Well from Head to Toe in Summer and Winter – VisionAware
- (Fishing) How to Be Your Own Advocate – CareerConnect (aphcareerconnect.org)
- Power Up Your Work Performance With Regular, Enjoyable Exercise! – CareerConnect (aphcareerconnect.org)
- Get Pumped Up: The Work-Related Benefits of Exercise for People Who Are Blind or Visually Impaired – CareerConnect (aphcareerconnect.org)