Athletes at all levels often buy a lot of “the latest and greatest” gear to level up their game. But many sports enthusiasts overlook a key factor in optimizing their sports performance — their vision.
Why do you even need sports sunglasses?
It is no secret that quality sunglasses can not only lower the risk for eye injuries but they also give you the ability to see with greater speed, accuracy, clarity and comfort. Therefore, you may have a key advantage over competitors.
This extra edge of better vision with sports sunglasses can manifest itself in different ways, depending on the sport. For example, for biking, sunglasses with the appropriate lenses may help you see better down the road or trail for a safer ride, especially when travelling downhill at high speeds.
Different colour for different activity
The most important features of performance sports sunglasses are the optical quality and visual enhancement properties of the lenses. To some degree, selecting a tint is a matter of personal preference. However, certain tints offer advantages for specific visual tasks and environments.
Grey lenses will reduce the maximum amount of visible light while still allowing for true colour perception. They are best for outdoor sports — golfing, cycling, boating — driving, and general outdoor use. When in doubt, go with grey lenses for any outdoor activities.
Yellow or orange lenses will heighten contrast in low-light conditions such as overcast weather. These colours work well for sports like cycling, hunting, shooting, skiing, snowboarding, snowmobiling, indoor basketball, handball, racquetball and tennis.
Green lenses can help you see in shadowy areas while reducing glare simultaneously. Green lenses transmit colours evenly and are a solid choice for general outdoor use regardless of the weather conditions. They can be useful for virtually any outdoor sport and are frequently used for baseball and golf.
Blue or purple lenses are a very stylish, popular choice. Aside from reducing glare, blue or purple lenses can help define contours, therefore, they are well suited for skiing, snowboarding, or other winter activities.
Red or pink lenses will increase contrast by filtering blue light. Many drivers prefer red or pink lenses for greater road visibility, and prolonged comfort. They are suitable for sports like cycling, fishing, hunting, shooting, skiing, snowboarding, snowmobiling and water sports.
Dark amber, copper or brown lenses block high amounts of blue light to heighten contrast and visual acuity. Particularly useful to improve contrast on grass and against blue skies, so they are popular in baseball, cycling, fishing, hunting, skiing and water sports.
Typically, you will be best served if you have at least two different pairs of sports sunglasses for different lighting conditions.
What brands of sports sunglasses are the best for your favourite sport? Discover it here!
What features you should choose?
Although tints alone can improve your sports vision significantly by changing the quantity and quality of light entering the eye, you also may want to consider adding these performance-enhancing features to your sports sunglasses:
Photochromic lenses - these light-sensitive lenses are clear indoors and at night, and darken automatically in sunlight. They are available in a variety of tint colours.
Polarized lenses - they have a special filter that blocks the light reflected by the surfaces (road, water, snow, sand,) and reduce glare and discomfort.
Anti-reflective coating - it eliminates glare from the light reflecting off the back surface of your lenses when you're facing away from the sun.