THE ABILITY TO READ FAST is made up of
lots of little skills. You can use as many or as few of those
skills as you want. The more of those individual skills you use,
the faster youll be able to read. Add all the skills together,
and sure, its dramatic. But who needs dramatics? A small
improvement is cool enough.
Of course, when you learn to read faster,
you can read more. But theres another benefit thats
not so obvious: Reading will become more interesting.
You find the same difference between hearing a lecturer who speaks
too slowly versus one who speaks at a comfortable but lively
pace. Its more interesting. Its more fun. It keeps
you awake. And by reading faster, youre making the process
more challenging in a controlled way. And a challenge that is
under your control is enjoyable.
Below are three basic techniques for increasing
your speed. Pick one and try it in the spirit of fun. When youve
got that one going pretty well, come back and add another one.
After awhile, youll have increased your speed...and probably
your comprehension too (studies show speed alone can increase
Here are the techniques:
Dont let your eyes regress. Keep them moving forward. They will have a tendency
to go back a few words occasionally. That continual little movement
backwards adds up. If you stop doing it, your speed will increase
a little. Studies indicate that rereading words like that doesnt
increase comprehension anyway.
Constantly practice picking up
speed as you read. Reading
is a skill, and like any other skill, the constant effort to
do it a little better keeps you getting better and better at
it as time goes on.
Take in more words at a time. If you normally see two words at a time when you
read, your eyes look at two words, move to the next two and stop
to look at those, move to the next two, etc. Begin taking in
three words at a time so your eyes make fewer stops, increasing
your speed. Increase your challenge only as your skill increases.
Keep it fun. Dont push yourself so hard it becomes stressful.
WHEN YOU FIRST practice a technique, youll
be conscious of using it and that may very well distract you
a little from comprehending what youre reading. But keep
practicing and the technique will become automatic, no longer
requiring your conscious attention, allowing you to put your
full attention on the content of the written material.
At that point, you will have gained an increase in reading skill
to enjoy for the rest of your life.
To read faster and increase
Dont let your eyes regress,
practice picking up speed, and take in more words at a time.