Does Reading More Increase Reading Speed?
You can increase your reading speed by reading and practicing regularly. The average person reads anywhere from 150 – 250 words per minute (wpm). However, a fast reader can easily read more than 400 wpm.
Many people want to increase their reading speed. These include students who need to conduct research, employees who have to submit a report to the boss, or just a book reader who wants to complete the book quickly. And fortunately, there are various ways to do so.
One of these ways is reading more.
In this article, we’ll answer the question of why reading more improves your reading speed and other ways to do so.
Does reading more improve your reading speed?
Practice can help you polish new skills. If you read more, you can eventually improve your reading speed and cover more words in a short time.
However, your reading speed also depends on your technique. You can read more, but if you’re unable to comprehend anything, it kills the purpose of reading.
This is why no matter how fast you read, you need to maintain your comprehension rate.
Firstly, you need to develop a strategy to improve your reading speed. For instance, you should prevent subvocalizing or fixating on individual words.
In the beginning, sticking to a technique will decrease your comprehension rate. However, as you read more while keeping the technique into account, you will comprehend the text and read much faster.
To understand why this works, let’s take an example.
When you drove the car for the first time, it would have been difficult to pay attention to the steering wheel, pedals, dashboard signs, traffic, and other stuff while driving.
However, as you keep on practicing, you picked up the skill, and now you can drive without consciously thinking about different elements of the car.
It shows why practice is necessary.
When you read more while focusing on the right technique, you train your mind. Accordingly, even reading 20 – 30 minutes per day can do wonders for you.
You can start with reading books to build your fluency and speed.
More ways to improve your reading speed
You can learn how to skim the text while reading the topic sentences of the paragraphs. Or you can forcibly read faster by moving your lips to improve your reading speed.
However, remember it’s important that you retain whatever you are reading. Especially if you have to read hundreds of pages for an important event like an examination, then feed-forcing your brain with lots of information is ineffective.
Therefore, techniques that improve learning speed are effective in improving reading speed.
Below, we have described ways to improve your learning and reading speed.
1. Cut down on distractions while reading
You learn and read better in a distraction-free environment. Make sure that you sit in a quiet and cozy place whenever you are reading. In this way, you will focus and retain the information you are reading.
If you have a bad habit of picking your phone every ten minutes while reading, then you should avoid it.
Maybe you’re trying to read in a crowded place like a public train. You will have to slow down to retain whatever you are reading in such situations.
In some cases, exhaustion can pose a distraction and affect your reading speed. For instance, if you have been practicing for your examinations for long or working the entire day, you won’t be able to read well.
This is why it’s always better to take small breaks and rest. You can then resume reading with more energy and motivation.
2. Know why you are reading the text
When you pick up a reading, you should know why you are reading it and what you want to learn. In this way, you will be focusing upon the right kind of information and not focus on irrelevant details.
For instance, if you’re a research student analyzing a research paper, then you will be focusing upon the topic question, methodology, and main results of the paper. You won’t be focusing a lot on other parts of the paper.
Or maybe you’re an employee in a company who’s making a yearly report of their department. Here, you will focus on elements like budgeting, human resource, and marketing.
Accordingly, you can pay attention to certain parts of the paper and slow down while reading them. You can skim the rest of the sections, and in this way, you’ll be able to read quickly while retaining significant information.
3. Enroll in an online course to enhance your memory
You might be unable to find the technique that works for you. Maybe you have tried different things already, but nothing is working out. In such cases, an online course can help you learn how to enhance your retention skills and maintain your focus.
Some people can’t read quickly because they keep on forgetting what they have just read. They have to read the sections repeatedly until they memorize them. But there are various courses online that can help improve your memory skills.
For example, Iris Reading has a 90-minute course that helps in maximizing memory. It is a video-based course that includes all practical techniques you can follow. You will even get a certificate once you complete the course.
Some people fail to improve their reading speed when they don’t practice regularly. They easily forget the techniques they employ while reading and eventually decrease their reading speed. For such people, it’s important to maintain productivity.
Iris Reading also offers a fantastic productivity course. This short course comes with 33 instructional videos, usually requiring more than 13 hours. You can also get access to various webinars through the course and avail a certification of completion.
4. Test yourself
As important as reading regularly, you should also test what you have learned. In this way, you will identify if the reading technique is working for you.
It is very easy to sit down one day and just finish the reading in one go. However, if you don’t retain the information, all our efforts will go in vain. This is why it’s important to test yourself from time to time during reading and identify if you are retaining any information.
For instance, once you have read a chapter, you can take a short break. When you come back, try remembering what you just read. Or you can make some notes without peeking inside the book and test whether you remember things like important dates or names.
5. Have a schedule in place
Scheduling practice can do wonders for you. It can improve your reading skills, help you memorize important information, and help you complete important pieces of text in a short period.
This is why you have a habit of reading every day, even if you do it for 15 minutes.
Once you decide to read every day, you will feel that you’re reading better.
Try to challenge yourself when reading a text. Make notes or try to recall the information you have just gained. You can even sit down with a friend to tell them what you have just read.
You should also identify the type of text you want to read, as it affects the reading speed. For instance, technical research papers require some time for reading, especially if you don’t have much background information on the topic.
This is why you should start with easy texts and read them slowly. Then, after a few days, you can start reading more challenging texts with complicated phrases, sentence structures, and vocabulary.
Most importantly, every time you read, make sure to read a little faster than your previous reading. In this way, you can test your reading technique and slowly improve your reading speed.
Reading more can definitely improve your reading speed. By reading regularly, you can train your brain to pick up a certain reading technique, enhance your retention skills, and read more words per minute.
However, remember that reading is only effective when you remember the information. Therefore, It’s also crucial that you work upon your learning skills.
To improve your reading skills, you should read in a distraction-free environment, practice every day, and read a text that is easier to deal with.
You can take a speed reading tool to see how many words you can cover per minute.
And if your speed is below average, sign up for our speed reading mastery course!