Everything to Know Before You Buy Swimming Goggles

From their benefits, the different types, and more make sure you’re picking up the best swimming goggles.

If you have spent some time as a seasoned swimmer, you probably know how beneficial a good pair of swimming goggles can be. If you are still new to the sport of swimming, however, you might be wondering how they can help you. Many people think that swimming goggles are only for playing pool games, but they are also one of the best tools in a swimmer’s gear bag.

With that in mind, many still think that they can walk into a store, buy any pair of swimming goggles, and not worry about it. While most goggles feature the same components and serve the same purposes, not all are created equal. Let’s take a look at some of the benefits a well-fitting pair of swimming goggles can provide to you and how to choose the perfect pair for you.

Goggles Help You See

This benefit is completely obvious, but if you’ve ever dealt with leaky goggles before, you know how important having a well-sealed pair is. Human eyes, unlike many animals, we’re not designed to see both in and out of the water. Having a pair of swimming goggles corrects this issue, and allows you to avoid other swimmers, spot the wall and time your flip turn perfectly, and more.

Swim Goggles Protect Your Eyes

When you swim without goggles in a pool, you might notice that your eyes can become irritated and turn red after a long swim. While many might think that this is from the chlorine/salt that the pool is treated with, many times it’s from biological components reacting with the treatment.

We’ll spare you the nasty details, but know that most of the public pools you swim in aren’t the cleanest. By wearing goggles, you can protect yourself from the nasty things floating around in the pool and save yourself the eye rubbing on the way home.

Tips When You Buy Swimming Goggles

Now that we’ve covered the two primary benefits of using swimming goggles, these are our tips to make sure that you pick the right pair.

Where will you swim?

Where you choose to swim will play a role in the type of swimming goggles that you’ll want to pick up. If you’re swimming in a pool, practically any style of swimming goggles will work for you. If you swim in outdoor pools frequently, then you might want to consider swimming goggles that are tinted or mirrored. They are essentially the sunglasses of the goggle world and will help to block out the glare from the sun.

If you swim out in the open water, you’ll want to buy swimming goggles with polarized polycarbonate lenses. With these lenses, you’ll have the best clarity. Many of these models also feature wrap-around lenses which enable you to see more through your peripheral vision, which is helpful while out in the open water.

The Fit

Not everyone’s face is the same, so not every pair of swimming goggles will fit your face perfectly. For this reason, it’s important to know exactly what a well-fitting pair of goggles should feel like.

When you wear a pair of swimming goggles, they should feel snug but not uncomfortably tight. You should look for swimming goggles with either an adjustable nose piece or multiple pieces of varying lengths. Many of the leaks in swimming goggles start at the nose area. If the nose strap is too wide for your nose, it will cause the eyepieces to lift, causing leaks.

When trying on a pair of swimming goggles, the straps should feel nice and snug around your head. Because many goggles come with two straps, most people like to place one strap a little higher than the other for a more comfortable fit. The eye sockets of the goggles should form a relatively snug seal even when you’re outside the water. If there are any gaps in the eye sockets seal, you’ll be in for a rough time once you jump into the water.

Sockets and Lenses

When shopping for swimming goggles, you might notice words like “profile” and “socket size.” These just describe the different sizes of the lenses and sockets on the swimming goggles. A lot of this comes down to your own personal preference. Some swimmers prefer swimming goggles with smaller socket sizes because they securely fit inside the orbital bone. On the other hand, you’ll find that some swimmers prefer larger socket lenses because they feel more comfortable.

When it comes to choosing the lens size, the smaller the lens, the narrower your field of vision will be. Some prefer this because it’s like a racehorse with blinders, and can help you focus on the swim ahead. Conversely, some prefer wider fields of view so they can see more in the peripheral vision.