top of page
  • Jonathan Joffe

Enhance your Performance - Sports Vision.

Whether you’re a novice sportsman or a professional playing in the big leagues we are all driven by an innate need to succeed. We are constantly searching for new ways to enhance our performance. Every sportsperson knows keeping your mind and body in peak condition is a crucial part of this and many would agree that enhanced visual performance ranks high on the list.

Owing to the demands of both casual and competitive athletes sporting visual aids have evolved over the last decade or so as manufacturers have developed innovative eyewear to provide the best vision possible under extreme conditions.

Specialised eyewear such as protective goggles, prescription sports eyewear and performance sunglasses are viewed by many as game changers owing to the highly competitive environment of sports these days.

Performance sunglasses: these are not your run of the mill fashion eyewear you pick up at your favourite mall store, far from it actually.

Performance sunglasses are specialised eyewear of superior optical quality specifically designed to provide visual enhancement tailored to the needs of the wearer.

For example Amber tints on polycarbonate (simpler terms: plastic lenses) are a great choice for many outdoor sports enthusiasts such as runners, cyclists etc as they enhance contrast.

Being polycarbonate they are also lightweight and far more impact resistant.

Polarised lenses are highly recommended for most sporting activities as they reduce glare from light reflecting off flat surfaces such as water, sand or a field. This is a favourite amongst golfers, fisherman and professional hunters. These particular lens tints may help golfers notice subtle changes in the direction of the blades of grass on a green that could affect the line of a putt.

For the best possible vision, comfort and clarity in changing light conditions consider photochromic lenses e.g. Marathon bike races, motor rallies (Dakar and Desert Dash). These lenses are extremely versatile as they are clear indoors and at night and darken automatically in sunlight to varying degrees depending on the level of brightness.

One can even consider adding on an anti-reflective coating onto the back surface of your lenses only. This will eliminate glare from light reflecting off the back of your lenses when the sun is behind you.

One can even have sunglasses that feature interchangeable lenses with different tints for different activities and lighting conditions.

When choosing frames, durable and lightweight is what you are looking for. Opt for unbreakable models that have rubber pads on the bridge and the ends of the temples to keep the sunglasses securely in place even when you are sweating and moving quickly.

As you can see the options available are endless.

So where do you start your vision enhancing journey??


We recommend you see an optometrist to set you on the right track to enhancing your vision. Another interesting factor to note is that your optometrist can address numerous ocular health issues that can present as a hurdle to you performing optimally in your sporting activity while customising your sunglasses to suit your individual needs.

Some of the aspects to consider include:

  • The presence of a refractive error i.e. Do you have blurry/poor distance and near vision? It doesn’t help if you play rugby but only notice Godzilla running up to you for a full on tackle when he’s just a metre away.

These days many well equipped optometry practises have the ability to provide you with prescription sunglasses even for those rare high prescription wearers that would like their prescription to be incorporated onto “wrap around” sunglasses and swimming goggles.

  • Dry Eyes. A major concern here in Namibia. More especially for sportspersons, dry eyes can really play havoc with not just your performance level but your general enjoyment of the sport.

Dry eyes not only causes chronic discomfort accompanied by a gritty, sandy feeling but also reduces vision function by more than 30%. This becomes even more of a concern when you are a contact lens wearer.

Many eye care professionals now offer specialised dry eye treatment services including laser treatments that have proven highly effective.

Avid swimmers can request for their prescriptions to be incorporated into their swimming goggles (as mentioned earlier on) as it is not advisable to wear your contact lenses even if you have a superior quality swim goggles as the risk of eye infections is still present.

Many athletes do prefer contact lenses to prescription spectacles as they do obtain a larger field of view allowing for enhanced peripheral vision and most find contact lenses to be less cumbersome.

Currently there are numerous types of contact lenses on the market.

Your eye care professional can guide you on what may work best for you depending on your sporting activity, wear time and health of your eye. One may prefer daily disposable lenses to the monthly ones or find better comfort with lenses made of a specific material. Then there are lenses with varying/higher “water content” levels making them more “breathable” , a definite plus if you also have dry eyes.

Ocular even seasonable allergies is another condition one needs to be aware of. Did you know that Namibia has one of the highest pollen counts in the world?

So it’s no surprise that many of us suffer from chronic ocular allergies. Allergies can adversely affect ones vision and symptoms can become quite severe. Speak to your optometrist about the various treatment options available.

  • An important factor to always consider especially in contact and ball sports is OCULAR PROTECTION. Protective eyewear may not always be the most attractive but in some sports its essential.

World cup rugby player Ardie Savea won’t get on a rugby field without his protective eyewear. Protective eyewear has on many occasions proven sight saving for both competitive and casual sports persons.

Most protective eyewear is designed to fit the face snugly, offering as much coverage as possible and lenses are always polycarbonate also enabling it to be shatterproof.

Whatever your sporting or outdoor activity there are countless vision enhancing options available to you enabling you to better enjoy what you love doing most and reaching your full potential.

Happy sporting and here’s to you achieving those personal best goals you’ve set for 2020!!

Contact us at 061372620 for more information.

Your Olympia Optics Team.

50 views0 comments


bottom of page