Sports + Leisure

Better vision for athletes

They definitely are not just fashionable: Professional and amateur athletes benefit from special sports glasses

1 November 2019
  • Better vision for athletes

Whether your passion is cross-country skiing, marathon running, tennis, cycling, jogging, golfing or lounging on the beach – if you want to make sure that your vision is at its best when you are engaged in sports or leisure time activities, there is no getting around a good pair of sunglasses. They are often essential for recreation as well. High-quality spectacles do not only protect your eyes, they also facilitate clear and unclouded vision.

They definitely are not just fashionable: Professional and amateur athletes benefit from special sports glasses

Our eyes are our most important sensory organs. We assimilate 80 percent of everything that happens around us through them. In sports, vision plays an even more important role. Impaired vision does not mean simply being unable to hit the ball or score a goal; it also increases the risk of injury.

In virtually all sports, depth and motion perception and the ability to rapidly shift focus are important prerequisites that enable us to better zero in on opponents, teammates and toys. Additional glasses are necessary because everyday spectacles are generally inadequate for these purposes. Consequently, sports glasses or sunglasses provide much more than just UV protection.

It goes without saying that sports glasses have to correct amblyopia just as accurately as standard spectacles. Corrective lenses have to be customised for the needs of the user by the optometrist. There are also sports glasses that work with clip inserts for corrective lenses and exchangeable windscreens. In other words, the perfect pair of spectacles is indeed available for every visual requirement.

Another possible alternative: Contact lenses in combination with sports glasses. In that case, the primary function of the sports glasses is to protect the eyes and enhance contrast. Of course they also make a fashion statement.

In river canoe splashes

What you should know

It is impossible to find a pair of sports glasses that works ideally for every type of sport, yet you will be able to find the perfect pair for almost any discipline. Two key factors have to be taken into account. First and foremost, look for a tight yet comfortable fit. Secondly, make sure your glasses are break resistant. This is one of the reasons why their lenses should be made of highly refractive plastic.

Special plastic lenses facilitate optimal visual correction, in addition to being exceptionally robust, very light and thin. Anti-reflective coating and an anti-scratch hard coating are very important. Naturally, they also fit into a metal frame.

But beware: With metal frames, it is important that you choose a flexible alloy that is not brittle. Your optician will surely be able to assist you with these details.

A good pair of sports glasses should meet the following requirements:

  • Pleasant and secure wearing comfort
  • Earpieces that match the sport. An earpiece that goes all the way around the ear is ideal for jogging or many ball sports. Straight earpieces are better for cycling or inline skating because they fit more easily under a helmet
  • A soft nose bridge
  • An elastic sports band at the back of the head can sometimes come in handy
  • Headband glasses have a soft facial pad and a good ventilation system.

ZEISS Single Vision Sport is a special feature for sports glasses as well as designer spectacles and sunglasses. It also provides customised, optimal visual correction with ultra-modern wraparound frames. Thanks to these features, poor vision, image perception problems and overstrained eyes are now a thing of the past.

A good pair of sports glasses should meet the following requirements:

The advantages of ZEISS Single Vision Sport are

  • high break resistance
  • lightweight plastic glass
  • large selection of colours and coatings

ZEISS Single Vision Sport is therefore ideal for:

  • curved sunglasses
  • wraparound sports glasses
  • corrective spectacles with deep wrap
  • sports glasses with inner clips

A wide variety of additional spectacles are recommended depending on your preferred athletic activities

  • Goggles are best suited for water sports. They protect the eyes from bacteria, chlorine and salt water. A good fit is of course important. Skin-friendly silicone seals, adjustable eyecups and bands ensure outstanding wearing comfort. Contact lens wearers should definitely wear goggles. Naturally, all goggles and diving glasses are available with corrective lenses for optimal visual acuity.

  • In ball sports, spectacles provide optimum depth and motion perception as well as the best protection. Most injuries in this discipline are caused by flying objects, for instance during tennis matches and by squash balls, which can reach speeds of up to 200 km/h.

  • Studies have shown that poor vision causes 80 percent of all ski injuries. This is hardly surprising, given that snow reflects 95 percent of the light. This condition has a tendency to rapidly overstrain the eyes.

    The human eye is naturally set for an illumination level of 10,000 lux. In snow-covered areas, it finds itself instantly confronted with 10 times that impact. Consequently, the lenses used in sports glasses have to have an excellent UV filter and a third category tint level (ask your optometrist). A so-called polarisation filter is also useful.

  • For mountain biking and inline skating, the best sports glasses offer ideal protection against air flow, UV rays, insects and small rocks. Everyday spectacles are generally completely unsuitable for this purpose because they pinch, slip and break in the event of a fall. Also important: Properly adjusted sports glasses. The earpieces should not pinch under the helmet. Spectacle lenses should provide UV protection and should have a contrast-enhancing tint.

  • Naturally, safety plays an extremely important role in the air. This is why special spectacle lenses are recommended for aviators as well: Skylet sport. These spectacle lenses are ideal for conditions that require stronger insulation and protection from blinding light.

    If, as is the case with golf, the point of the game is to accurately locate and hit a precise target, make sure you pick one of the perfect pairs of sports glasses now available for such applications. Golfers are also often affected by blinding sunlight when they are on the green. Dancing shadows and changing light conditions can impair their vision – not a good thing for a golf enthusiast’s handicap.

    Specific sun protection lenses and special filter lenses for golf lovers that are precisely geared toward the sport’s needs are now available:  ProGolf.

Kids on bicycles in the sunny forest. Children cycling outdoors in helmet

Sports glasses for children

Even little tykes need them: Children need the same vision support and protection as adults when they swim, ski and play. In fact, children’s eyes are considerably more sensitive.

Hence, sports glasses for children should fit the anatomical proportions of the head well. They should be made from break-proof material and have very soft nose pads and earpieces. This will allow children to romp, climb, jump safely and even tumble in a carefree manner. Make sure that nothing will spoil the fun. High-quality dark lenses with a good UV filter are ideal because children’s eyes are more sensitive to UV rays.

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