Contact lenses are an essential part of my skiing experience. When I go on trips, I bring extra pairs because I know my vision is pretty poor and if I don’t have them I’m screwed. Skiing with my glasses is not an option for me (and I’m sure many others).
With my bad astigmatism, I’ve never been able to deal with wearing glasses under my goggles. That move never worked for me. Though for the skiers who can’t wear contacts, or don’t like them because their eyes dry out, Sport Rx is now debuting inserts that fit into most new goggles. The quintessential image of the basketball player on the court with “sporty glasses” is no more and the onerous double layer glasses with goggles doesn’t have to happen any longer.
Sport Rx isn’t a new brand, they’ve been making custom prescription sunglasses for various sunglass brands for years. Often times brands like Smith will sell you a prescription sunglass and Sport Rx is the one making that lens. However, this season they have embarked on goggle inserts. Trying to solve the conundrum of wearing glasses while wearing goggles.
Earlier this year I had the chance to test both the Dragon Alliance X2 Goggle with prescription insert and the Roka Vendee prescription sunglasses. As I took my contacts out in the Alta parking lot, after putting on my ski boots I began to get a little nervous. Was I going to be able to see and ski today?
It was a sunny day so I went to the shades first, and I was pleasantly surprised by the ability of the lens to restore my vision while at the same time provide all the benefits I would expect from a polarized shade—diminishing glare and providing sharpness while dimming the sun’s reflection on the snow. They took a bit to get used to, like any new pair of glasses, but after a few minutes my eyes adjusted, and I was good to go. My nerves eased.
This year Sport Rx has a new partnership with Oakley, allowing them to make their inserts for the Oakley Flight Deck—Oakley’s most popular goggle. The model wasn’t available yet earlier this winter, so I tested the Dragon. Customers can also choose prescription goggles from Smith, Anon, and Spy.
Initially, the goggle insert and I did not get along. However, I quickly realized why. When the goggle’s arrived the goggle insert was placed against the goggle lens, this is actually how Sport Rx wants you to use them. However, this brought the prescription insert into my field of view—making a muck of my field of vision. When I placed the insert near the foam lining part of the goggle (i.e. directly in front of my eyes) I was able to see with corrected vision through the entire field of view from the google.
After the quick fix, I was surprised on the vision quality. It gave the same vision as if I was wearing my contacts and most importantly the goggle insert was held in place by several plastic wands, so it didn’t move while skiing and was wedged in place.
Fogging fortunately was not an issue—a usual deal breaker if you have been skiing with glasses under your goggles ever. While I’ll keep wearing my contacts for skiing—it’s just what I’m used to—I can’t think of a better option for those who have to wear glasses while skiing.
The field of view is clear and crisp, doesn’t fog, and can be added to any new goggle, allowing skiers to get the benefits of new goggle technologies such as low light and lens enhancements.
This article originally appeared on Powder.com and was republished with permission.
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