Sunday, June 3, 2012

Beginner Echolocation Lesson #7 - Surface Training

This exercise will help you understand how to sense the perimeter of an object.  Remember that even if these exercises seem simple to you, every time you practice echolocation, even if just for a few minutes, it will help you develop your skill and tune your senses.  So keep practicing diligently and the harder lessons will start to become easier.

  1. Pick a flat object, not cloth, something like a piece of cardboard or wood.  The shape doesn't matter, as long as it is about 12" across.  A piece of paper is not great because it can make sounds of its own and we do not want that interfering with our training.  Give this object to a friend of family member to help you train.
  2. Find a spot outdoors or a large room without too many objects around.
    1. If you are inside, point yourself toward the corner of the room and not directly at a flat wall.  This will make it easier to differentiate between the object and the wall.
  3. Use your echolocating beacon and listen intently to the echoes it creates.
  4. Instruct your partner to slowly slide the flat object in front of you about 12-18 inches away from your face.  Don't tell them when to do it, just tell them to do it at random.  It's important that it is slow so that you don't hear any of the sounds related to them moving the object, like the rustling of clothes, changing their grip on the object, or air rushing around the corners of the object.
  5. Raise your hand when you have sensed the object so that they know you have sensed it and they can then remove it from in front of you.
  6. When you sense the object being removed from in front of you lower your hand.
  7. Do this repeatedly instructing your training partner to move the object further away from you after you are comfortable in one spot.
    1. At a certain distance, it will become difficult for your training partner to completely remove the object from in front of you without walking ten feet to one side.  You will certainly hear their footsteps and subconsciously use that as a clue, so instead of moving the object, just instruct them to turn it 90 degrees to that it is no longer facing you.
See how far away you can get and still accurately sense the object.

Free 10-Minute Audio Lesson: Learn the Echolocation Click

Learn echolocation clicks with a free audio lesson
Learning how to click is one of the first steps to becoming an effective echoloator. This lesson provides clicking samples of a variety of different clicks and descriptions of when they might be most useful. This lesson has been used by O&M instructors all over the world.

Despite popular belief, it's easy to make your clicking quite subtle or unnoticeable even in quiet settings. There are many different clicks for different situations. I explain all of these in great detail and give examples of where, why and when they can and should be used.

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