Sports eyewear can give you the performance edge you are seeking for in just about any sport, but make sure you get the eye protection you need as well. And after you are fit for the right eyewear, you might want to take your game up a notch with the same kind of vision training used by professional athletes.
Your vision is extremely important in sports, whether you play golf, soccer, baseball, basketball or racquet sports. If you want to perform your best in sports, you may benefit from seeing an optometrist who specializes in sports vision, even if you already have 20/20 vision. This is because a typical eye exam usually does not include tests of visual skills important to sports performance.
Sports Vision Testing
Sports vision testing is more extensive, and can be tailored to the specific sport you are interested in. During a sports vision exam, it’s not unusual for the examiner to include tests to evaluate how well you see while you are moving around outdoors and interacting with other objects or players.
Many professional athletes work on their sports vision, but so do high school and college athletes, recreational golfers, tennis players and even billiards players. Some non-sports professionals also benefit from the same vision training, including law enforcement personnel and pilots.
When you visit a sports vision specialist, he or she will probably give you a complete eye exam and will ask you questions about your activities. More testing will determine your sports-related needs. These tests may include the use of three-dimensional, holographic images so you can react to them as in real life, and computerized tests that measure your reaction time and eye-hand coordination.
Choosing the right eye protection for a sport is as vital as choosing the right equipment and accessories. More often than not eyes are at risk from injury through sports. Eliminate injury and ensure maximum vision is maintained under the most extreme conditions, whatever the sport or prescription.
During a typical game, a racquetball can travel between 60 and 200 miles per hour. Another potential danger is that the racquets themselves move at high speed in a confined space and often make contact with one another.
Flying objects aren’t the only hazard. Many eye injuries come from pokes and jabs by fingers and elbows, particularly in games where players are in close contact with each other. Basketball, for example, has an extremely high rate of eye injury.
These are great reasons to wear protective eyewear. Another aspect has to do with performance. It used to be common for people with mild to moderate prescriptions to simply participate in sports without wearing their glasses or contacts. But sharp vision is a vital ingredient to performing well in nearly every sport, and participating in sports when you have less than 20/20 vision is counterproductive.
Features To Look For
Some sports styles are contoured, wrapping slightly around the face. This type of goggle works well for biking, hang-gliding, and sailing. Contact lens wearers especially benefit from the wraparound style, which shields your eyes from wind and dust.
Important Fitting Considerations
By the same token, permitting a youngster to continue wearing goggles that he or she has outgrown can be just as dangerous. First, the frames will be uncomfortable, tempting the child to take them off. Secondly, the frames may obstruct peripheral vision, leading to poor performance with a potential for impact from unseen sources to one side or another.
Review the fit of your youngsters’ sports eyewear each year to ensure that they are still providing proper protection and are fitting comfortably. Make sure the padding inside the sides of the goggle rests flush with the face and the eyes are centered in the lens area.