Swim goggles were used by Persian divers in the 14th century. These divers used polished tortoise shells to make protective eye goggles. The swim goggles that we know, came into existence around the 1960s.
Since then, technological advancements have made it possible for manufacturers to make prescription swim goggles with both positive and negative diopters.
Need for Prescription Goggles
Our normal vision is a result of the reflection of light rays from that object. However, light rays behave differently in different media, and this is the reason why the floor of a swimming pool appears higher than it actually is. Hence, while swimming, the eye-hand coordination may be difficult to maintain for people who have vision problem.
This provides greater precision to our vision. In case of people who are nearsighted, farsighted, or are affected by astigmatism, use of corrective lenses underwater becomes all the more important.
It is here that using prescription inserts in swimming goggles comes into consideration. However, the same prescription for contact lenses or eye glass lens that one normally wears cannot be used for swim goggles.
This is because the diopter of the lens varies according to the distance between the eyes and the lens when it is worn. This is the same reason why the diopter of the contact lenses and the eyeglass lenses for the same individual are not identical.
If a person uses corrective lenses, then he has to opt for optical swim goggles while swimming. People with weak eyesight may develop blurred vision if they swim without corrective lenses. Swimming with glasses or lenses on is inconvenient.
The chlorine present in the water of the swimming pool tends to spoil contact lenses. All these problems highlight the benefits of wearing optical swimming goggles. However, to get proper swimming goggles, one must consult an eye-care professional who specializes in sports eye wear.
These goggles can be pre-made or can be customized according to one's need. In case of nearsightedness or farsightedness of the same degree in both the eyes, pre-made optical goggles may be a convenient option, as these are easily available in the market.
However, for people with varying diopters in both the eyes, these goggles need to be customized. This is also true for those people who are affected by astigmatism. For custom-made goggles, prescription inserts could be used for any model. The lenses for swimming goggles are available in a large variety of material like acrylic, plastic, and glass.
Before buying an optical swim goggle for oneself, he/she should consult an optician as he will prescribe a good company to buy these goggles from. A regular eye doctor or a sports vision specialist may also be able to help you in getting the right pair. It is possible to purchase these products online.
With so many options available, optical lenses should not hold you back from taking a splash in the pool. Take out your favorite swimwear and put on those fabulous goggles to enjoy cool afternoons in the pool this summer.