Spritzing [sprit-sing]: Reading at a Superhuman Speed

Spritzing [sprit-sing]: Reading at a Superhuman Speed


Tess Kim, School News Editor

Everyone’s read a book before; everyone knows what traditional reading encompasses. It requires constant eye movement going from word to word, line to line, page to page;  and hopefully, cover to cover. Why do people read? For those people who didn’t say, “It’s required for my class,” the most common reasons are: to immerse and expose oneself to something new not experienced before, whether it’s knowledge or entertainment.

Take a look at and read the first sentence of this paragraph again.  According to an online source, one will be amazed to find out that “when reading, only around 20% of your time is spent processing content. The remaining 80% is spent physically moving one’s eyes from word to word,” (Spritz). So what is spritzing all about? It helps one get all that remaining time back by focusing on the ORP (optimal recognition point).

Before understanding what spritzing involves, let’s consider the basic aspects of  the reading process. Every time a reader arrives at a new word in a book, his or her eyes look for a certain point within the word. This is the optimal recognition point. Once a reader’s eye finds the ORP, the brain begins to understand and process the unfamiliar word. Then, as one moves onto the next word (this eye movement is called a “saccade”), the eyes hunt for the ORP again. Therefore, it’s understandable that 80% of the time spent reading is trying to find every word’s ORP in order to process what is being read.

Of course, there are other reading methods people have made a habit of in order to read faster. This may be because readers feel overwhelmed by the words staring back at them or the frustration in reading every single word. There’s skimming (not reading every single word), avoiding internal conversations while reading, and “enlarging the peripheral span (reading an entire page at a time by mental ‘snapshot’),” (Spritz). While these methods can be effective, these kinds of reading can be loose and the story being read will not flow as well. By contrast, spritzing is a reading methodology that allows the reader to quickly read and retain every single word.

So what exactly is spritzing?  Well it’s an actual physical training for the eye. To start off with, there is a small screen in which one word at a time appears. As shown in the featured picture above, the parallel lines and red letter mark the ORP that the eye focuses on. This screen automatically allows the eye to adjust to the ORP without wasting time having to look for it. The average person reads 250 words per minute. Spritz flips through words at this rate, and once the reader has mastered this speed, he/she can increase the speed (word per minute). The fact that the ORP is already pinned down reduces the speed of reading, making spritzing extremely “precise, convenient and comfortable” (Spritz), but don’t just take the company’s word for it. Go to http://www.spritzinc.com/the-science/ and hit the “click to spritz” button to try it out yourself!

Sources: Spritz (http://www.spritzinc.com/the-science/)