Contacts vs. Glasses? - Mountain Buzz

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Old 01-24-2012   #1
FoCo, Colorado
Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 25
Contacts vs. Glasses?

i'm newish to kayaking, and i was wondering if anyone has advice on contacts vs. glasses for boating. unfortunately i'm not a candidate for lasek, and i've got horrid eyesight without any correction. Thanks!

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Old 01-24-2012   #2
Boulder, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2005
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 65
I'd definitely go with contacts, i've lost glasses in the river before, but you should see if you can try some different types. Mine stay in really well but i have friends who have lost contacts when they get splashed in the face which turns into a pain in the ass when you're only half way down something.
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Old 01-24-2012   #3
Denver, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2002
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 586
I started out wearing contacts, but I was losing them regularly and I didn't like having to close my eyes every time I got splashed in an effort to not lose contacts.
I switched to glasses and I have been wearing the same pair of glasses thru more than 9 years of paddling, 500 river days. The key is getting the right strap, along with shatter-proof lenses and tough, flexible frames.
I don't have to close my eyes when I get splashed, and I can open my eyes while under water, which I find useful.
The drawback is, if it is a humid day, you can have trouble with fogging.
Fortunately here in Colorado, that is rarely the case. The air is so dry, I only have fogging problems about one in 10 river days.
my 2 cents.
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Old 01-24-2012   #4
Littleton, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2010
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 350
Glasses work fine. I always use a sport strap. Only problem is fog. I try to keep up using anti-fog spray/wipes, but it doesn't always work that well.

I started using contacts+goggles for the pool, so far so good. I'm considering testing that combination for the season.
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Old 01-24-2012   #5
pnw, Colorado
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 3,408
I have tried several different contact lenses and every one I have tried recently move in my eye every time they get wet which is giving me tons of problems. I am thinking about changing to glasses but was concerned with fogging.
"Yesterday I was clever and tried to change the world. Today I am wise and try to change myself." -Rumi
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Old 01-24-2012   #6
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river zen, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1997
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 176
I have tried wearing my contacts. No matter what I always get splashed in face or eye and then I'm stuck running the rest of the rapid more blind than if I wasn't wearing them. The water is cold in CO and glasses fog up as soon as they get wet. I have just gone to padding without anything. What class of water do you plan on paddling? If paddling easier stuff say up to class 3 I would stick with contacts. If you plan on padding class 4-5 and have to wear something go with glasses.
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Old 01-24-2012   #7
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Boulder, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2003
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 2,111
What pem27 said. Neither is ideal, but paddling with glasses is awful.
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Old 01-24-2012   #8
FoCo, Colorado
Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 25
Thanks everyone. I'm constantly getting my contacts sort of was around a bit, and my eyesight is poor enough that I'm essentially blind without them. I'm contemplating glasses as I progress onto harder stuff.
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Old 01-24-2012   #9
Boulder, Colorado
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 188
I use daily disposable AccuvueII soft contacts and have only lost one in 5 years or so. I open my eyes instinctively when I roll. A quick hard blink or 2 usually re-centers things. Way better than fog.
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Old 01-24-2012   #10
North Bend, Washington
Paddling Since: 2009
Join Date: May 2009
Posts: 476
I wear glasses since I've never had contacts (and I raft so not as much in the face). I taken swims with the glasses on and they still seem to stick around as long as I make sure the retainer strap is tight before leaving shore. I don't have fogging problems because I wipe a little spit on them first so they don't fog- some think that's gross so they don't do it. Whatever- it works for me.
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