Are you confused about whether or not you should go for protective eye-gear while pursuing the sport of pickleball? Here’s our rundown about everything related to protective pickleball eyewear including its benefits and the factors involved in going for it.
Here at RacketSportsWorld.com, we had already spoken about the need to wear eyewear for squash and tennis players, and in this piece we look at whether it’s a necessity for pickleball players as well.
We look at whether eye protection is needed while playing pickleball, the factors one needs to consider before going for protective pickleball eyewear, and benefits of wearing this eyewear.
Let’s begin with whether protective eyewear is really necessary in the sport of pickleball.
Should I Use Protective Eye Gear While Playing Pickleball?
While this is a very personal choice the fact that injuries are common in most sport including pickleball should be reason enough to consider wearing protective eye-gear while playing this game. There have been cases of players having suffered from eye injuries while playing pickleball and that is why erring on the side of caution is the best way to go about this.
Let’s dig slightly deeper into this.
In the sport of pickleball, the ball used is a whiffle ball consisting of perforations and the players are typically standing at the Non-Volley Zone in a bid to return it back to their opponents.
The distance between these opponents is less than 15 feet and the kind of speeds at which the ball comes back might not cause any issues if hit some other part of your body but could lead to a dangerous eye injury.
The ball used in pickleball travels is between 30-40 mph which means the reaction time players have at the Non-Volley Zone is approximately a quarter of a second. It’s not too difficult for things to go wrong now, right?
And it’s not just a random pickleball that misses your paddle which can cause that hurt. The injury could also be an inadvertent hit on the eye by your partner’s arm or his/her paddle.
Which begs a question…
Which Eye Injuries That Can Be Caused in Pickleball?
While pickleball eye injuries are rare, there have still been instances of players suffering from bruises, cuts and swelling and the rarer cases of interocular bleeding and retinal detachment. Some of these injuries could lead to a loss of vision which makes it imperative to use protective equipment for your eyes.
The best way to prevent these eye injuries is to wear protective eye equipment while playing pickleball. Sure, it might take some time getting used to it but very soon it would feel second nature.
Why Do Pickleball Players NOT Wear Protective Eyewear Then?
There are multiple reasons why pickleball – and other racket sports – players avoid wearing protective eyewear. Some of them are mentioned below:
- Sweat condensation on these glasses could lead to fogging on the glasses which in turn reduces the visibility
- Cost associated with protective eyewear could be a huge deterrent too for some of the beginner and intermediate players
- Other reasons like bad fit and ‘uncool’ looks
Most of these reasons can be overcome with advancement of technology and the presence of better protective eyewear in the market.
Reasons to Wear Protective Eyewear
There are multiple reasons why one must consider using protective eyewear while playing pickleball, some of which has already explained in the sections above. Below is a list of the whys associated with wearing pickleball protection for the eyes.
Prevents Eye Injuries
This has already been spoken about ad nauseum in the article above but it’s worth repeating. Pickleball-related eye injuries are becoming more and more common in the sport, whether it’s due to an errant ball flying at one’s face or due to your partner’s paddle or elbow.
A good protective eyewear will help prevent such injuries and make it a far safer sport for all those involved.
Protection against UV Rays
Excessive exposure to sunlight while playing pickleball could lead to UV rays-related issues and while the rest of the body can be protected by using UV-resistant lotions, the only way to protect one’s eyes is by using this eyewear.
Protection against Wind
If you are playing outdoors, there is always that chance of your play getting affected by the wind and other elements of nature. While the game itself could be affected by these elements, the one aspect of your play that can be controlled against these issues is the effect it might have on your vision.
Using protective eyewear could go a long way in making it easier to play in less than ideal outdoor weather conditions.
Protection against Excessive Light
Whether you are facing a very bright sun outdoors or getting blinded by the floodlights in the night, a good pair of protective eyewear can help diminish these effects greatly.
Protection against Dust & Pollen
Pickleball eyewear can also provide protection against dust and pollen, especially while playing outdoors.
Protection against Sweat
You don’t want the sweat on your brow to enter your eyes and make it difficult to sight the ball during a rally. Wearing compact pickleball eyewear prevents that from happening.
You also should have a pair of protective eyewear which is resistant to fogging in order to prevent vision issues. Glass fogging also makes it that much more cumbersome for players who need to keep removing the glasses after every rally to wipe the sweat and fogging away.
Factors to Consider Before Buying a Pair of Protective Pickleball Eyewear
By now you would have realized how vital protective eyewear is for a game of pickleball. So moving on to the factors one needs to look at before making that purchase of protective pickleball eyewear, here’s our list.
This is a very important consideration before purchasing your pair of protective eyewear. You don’t want to go for glasses which you then struggle with while playing the game, either if it’s too loose or too tight.
If loose, the eyewear might not stay in place and add to the discomfort while a very tight frame runs the risk of breaking easily, not to mention a chance of getting bad headaches.
Most protective eyewear is manufactured to ensure it’s lightweight in nature because it’s a very important factor. You want to feel your eyewear is a part of you, rather than something heavy hanging off of your face. Don’t compromise on your eyewear’s weight while going for a cheaper frame.
While there are sprays which can be used on eyewear to prevent them from fogging, the best way to go about selecting your protective glasses is to go with those which offer anti-fogging protection.
This helps prevent condensation of sweat on the glasses, thereby improving visibility instead of reducing it.
As mentioned earlier, sunrays contain harmful UV rays which can cause severe damage to the human body. The way to protect one’s eyes from these harmful rays is by using UV-resistant eyewear.
Some of the pickleball protective eyewear offer an excellent contrast between the ball and the court, which improves the clarity and makes it easier to spot the ball. This is a good feature to have in your pickleball eyewear but could come at a cost.
An important feature in any kind of sporting protective eyewear is it needs to be resistant to breaking into small pieces on impact.
I mean, the very reason to go with any kind of protective pickleball eyewear is to protect your eyes from damage and you obviously don’t want the glasses to be that brittle that they break easily on impact with a pickleball.
It’s good to go for eyewear which is anti-scratch to avoid easy scratching or marks on the glasses. Scratches make it difficult for the players to continue using the same eyewear without vision discomfort and it’s only natural to then have to change it, thereby adding to the cost.
Needless to say, players want to adopt the latest trends and stylish pickleball eyewear like the ones provided by RIA Eyewear is the way to go.
Final Words on Pickleball Eyewear
As can be seen from the discussion above, using protective eyewear while playing pickleball is almost a necessity. The benefits of using pickleball eyewear far outweigh any negatives associated with it and wearing it makes the sport a far safer one for everyone.
In a separate piece on this website, we will explore our favourite eyewear for pickleball players.