Being blind can be a challenge sometimes but it doesn’t have to mean not having fun or not joining in with certain activities.
It also doesn’t mean the person is fully blind — they may just be visually impaired which can also be referred to as being blind sometimes as it may just affect certain portions of the person’s vision.
In fact, most blind people regularly engage with other blind folk and even people with their full senses intact and thus, can mostly enjoy a fairly normal life.
With that in mind, we wanted to highlight some activities that blind people like to do for fun for educational reasons, but also because it might inspire someone out there to give it a go.
What Blind People Do For Fun: 10 Things You/They Can Easily Engage With
If you’ve ever watched or listened to the movie Scent of a Woman then you’ll know how passionate Al Pacino’s character Lt. Col. Frank Slade was about dancing.
This isn’t atypical even for a blind person as most people can still appreciate the art form of dancing, but it can also bring a level of physical intimacy with another person, whether it be professionally or romantically.
Blind people can learn basically any dance style, especially with the right kind of guidance and training.
It may take a little more patience than usual and perhaps a little more space to maneuver in but other than that, it brings many of the same benefits that non-disabled people get to enjoy such as a great workout and the satisfaction of learning something new.
2. Music Concerts
One of the greatest things about music is that it doesn’t have to be seen to be enjoyed.
Just take Ray Charles as a clear example of this; he’s one of the most famous musicians on the planet and is completely blind — better yet, he never considered it a disadvantage either which is probably why he was so successful.
For this reason, attending music concerts or anything audio-based for that matter is a great source of enjoyment for many blind people around the world.
It’s also a great way to make new friends and meet like-minded people when attending these types of events, especially since music is heavily tied to a person’s identity.
Yes, even blind people need to eat, but even worse is considering that they can’t enjoy or appreciate the art form of cooking and the powerful sense of expression it can bring.
Herbs, spices, meat, and plants are all bursting with flavor and are all waiting for the right type of creative mind to bring them together in a crescendo of tongue-tingling excitement.
With the right kind of adapted setup, blind people can easily enjoy the fruits of their labor from a good cooking session whether at home or working in the kitchen.
This may require a little bit of trial and error at first or even some assistance when starting out, but once a rhythm is established, you won’t be able to tell apart the difference from a meal cooked by someone who isn’t visually impaired.
Some of the most enlightening and thought-provoking discussions can now be enjoyed almost instantaneously over the internet through services like Spotify, Luminary, and YouTube.
This quick access to audio-based content also includes fictional and non-fiction books that are uploaded to audiobook services like Audible, Google, and Scribd.
In a way, this is perhaps the primary method of enjoyment for many blind people as it’s designed to be listened to rather than seen.
This tailor-made listening experience means blind people don’t feel as left out mainly because they aren’t missing part of the experience unlike when watching/listening to movies that are made with images in mind also.
Swimming is one of the best fitness hobbies for blind people, especially when done in a dedicated swimming pool with barriers in the lanes to help guide them.
For the most part, swimming is an incredibly sensory experience that nearly anyone can appreciate, perhaps more so by someone who relies on touch to experience the world around them.
The feeling of being held up and caressed by the water around you can be one of the most cathartic experiences we know of which shouldn’t be missed irrespective of your disposition.
6. Video Games
Video games come in all shapes and sizes these days and are often made with disabilities in mind; yes, that also includes visually impaired people too.
In some cases, video games may need to be adapted to further enhance the experience for the visually impaired person, though, it’s more often a case of picking the right game for the job.
We recommend watching or listening to this video to hear more from a blind gamers perspective:
Aside from that, it’s also worth bearing in mind the type of game genre you want to play.
Some genres naturally lend their style of play better to visually impaired people than some others — for example, games that are turn-based allow for more time to process information without any pressure.
Alternatively, TCG-style games such as Hearthstone can often be adapted very well as they’re also turn-based without too much pressure on timing – they also allow you to scratch that competitive itch.
In most developed parts of the world, going for a walk when you’re blind isn’t really a disadvantage.
That’s because there are blind dogs that can be trained to help you navigate the city better, but also because things like traffic lights are adapted to have tactile indicators that help you know when to cross the road.
In fact, most modern cities are designed in quite specific ways and often have quite obvious geometry that can help guide you to where you need to be – this is another perk of being in a modern city as opposed to a jungle.
The lack of randomness is an advantage for any visually impaired person who wants to make the most of a good walk around the city or further afield.
8. Board Games
The great thing about board games is that they’re meant to be played with other people.
This means not only can you include other visually impaired folks but you can also include friends and family who can help to guide you through the game if required; a caveat is that you’ll need to trust them (hah).
However, for the most part, once you learn a game you won’t even need the guidance to play it, even if you’re completely blind.
Most board games can be played on memory and touch alone which serves as the perfect conduit for channeling your competitive and sporting energy.
9. Online Communities/Social Media
The great thing about modern computing solutions is that they allow us to interact with them in many different ways, regardless of our disposition.
This includes things like text-to-speech services that can read aloud any kind of text on the screen so you can stay up to date with world affairs and can also interact with online communities like Reddit.
In fact, one of the most popular online community platforms, Discord, is great for meeting and talking to new people from all over the globe which can be really beneficial for someone who is visually impaired.
It’ll also help you stay up to date with niche hobby communities as most Discord servers are aimed at a particular topic e.g. video games, exercise, meditation, and much more.
The only thing you’ll need is a headset with a microphone so you can engage in real-time conversation; alternatively, text channels exist too that can also be read aloud by a text-to-speech service.
Writing can be done without much issue, particularly if you’re a good touch-typist whereby any errors are highlighted by a text-to-speech system.
In fact, rather than typing things out manually, you can actually just use a microphone to transcribe your words onto the page you’re writing on.
For blind people, this is a great way to channel their storytelling energies into something just as good as what any non-disabled person could write.
In fact, Stephen Hawking, though he wasn’t blind, was completely paralyzed and had to rely on a text-to-speech service to interpret what he wanted to say.
This allowed him to write many publications in regards to his scientific endeavors, but also so he could write mind-blowing books about what he predicted for the future and what he theorized about modern physics.
In conclusion, blind people are able to enjoy many of the same things that non-disabled people are able to enjoy, just in some cases they need to be specially adapted to compensate for their disposition.
It’s often a case of trial and error, whereby they’ll need to find a system that works for them and allows them to engage in hobbies or pastimes without much issue.
The same can be said for people without any disability — you just need to find something that works with your particular strengths.
- 5 Ways to Ask Someone About Their Hobbies (a How-to Guide)
- 6 Practical Solutions for When You’re Bored of Everything
- 5 Reasons Why You Get Bored of People So Quickly (And What You Can Do About It)
- The Biggest Informational List of Hobbies on the Internet: 300+ Hobbies to Ignite Your Passion
Resources for the Visually Impaired
- https://www.rnib.org.uk/ – General information for the visually impaired — UK Specific
- https://www.afb.org/ – General information for the visually impaired – US Specific
- https://www.sightadvicefaq.org.uk/ – Frequently asked questions regarding blindness
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