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We’re often asked by swimmers and tri-athletes who wear glasses if they can still wear them when swimming under their goggles. Though glasses are far better than contact lenses in order to keep a clear view when swimming, prescription goggles are the best option for those with poor eyesight. These are particularly important for competitive swimmers and tri-athletes who need to see clearly during their swim (whether in a pool or outdoors) for maximum performance.
Availability of Prescription Lenses
These days, prescription (or optical) goggles are available from outlets like Sharks Swim Shop and can even be ordered online. These goggles have come a long way in terms of design and development and are now as sleek and hydrodynamic as non-prescription goggles.
Competitive swimmers should look for a racing style of optical goggle with low profile frames. For those who don’t swim competitively, there are many types of ‘recreational’ goggles or masks on the market which will be a better alternative to swimming without glasses.
Types of Prescription Goggles
When it comes to choosing prescription goggles, Sharks Swim Shop now offers the View Brand of corrective lenses which can be inserted into the V500A Platina goggle but can also be combined with the VPS500A Parts Kit to customize a pair of prescription goggles. With just two lenses and one VPS500A strap kit the swimmer has a customized pair of goggles and a whole new vision underwater.
These corrective lenses come in blue or smoky grey and are sold individually so you will need to purchase two if you require a pair. The strap is sold separately.
Prescription lenses are made in a similar way as reading glasses which are sold in pharmacies. The prescription is a close match to your prescription lens but may not be as precise as the prescription provided by your optician.
There are two types of lenses for prescription goggles, diopters or step-diopters. Step-diopter prescription goggles are more widely available than custom-made, prescription goggles and are suitable for use by people who swim regularly.
Negative diopter lenses are also commonly available and are suitable for people who are short-sighted; while positive diopters are better for far sighted swimmers but are harder to find.
Choosing the Correct Prescription Goggles
To choose the correct prescription goggles for your eyesight, you need to refer to your most recent lens prescription from your optician.
According to the Swimoutlet.com website, you should use the following formula to get the correct diopter strength.
“1/2 of the cylinder + sphere = diopter strength Sphere is the degree of weakness in diopters. This is always a negative number for near sighted people, and a positive number for farsighted. Cylinder is the degree of astigmatism in your eye. Add half of this number to the sphere to determine diopter strength.”
If this sounds mind-boggling, the Swimoutlet website includes a Lens Calculator tool (click here to access this tool which will do the calculation for you automatically.
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