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Discussion Starter #1
I wear contacts and they are driving me crazy when I paddle. Most of the problems occur after a roll or a wave hits me in the face. Goggles suck and sunglasses don't keep the water out. Anybody find a solution for this? I am tired of not being able to see!
 

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i talked to my eye doctor and he recommended "Focus night and days". they seem to stick to my eyeball much better and i've had way less of a problem since.
 

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I wear contacts, too, but not when I paddle.
I think it is a good practice to have your eyes open when you're under water - it's better for your roll. And you can't have your eyes open under water with contacts.
Do what I did - break down and buy some prescription glasses. Good ones, with shatterproof lenses and tough frames. The right store will insure them, too - If if smash mine while I'm paddling, the store will replace em free.
And I haven't had any problems - they don't fog up on me, I don't have a problem with vision getting blurred from water on the lenses, and I've never been accused of looking like a dork on the water either. You can put your contacts back in at the takeout and look studly, but you're better off with glasses while you're boating, IMHO.
 

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I agree with Focus Night and Day from Ciba Vision. I've been wearing them for 3 seasons now and they stick to the eyeball like glue. I can even open my eyes underwater if necessary to see those rocks coming at me. I can mostly clear my vision after taking a big wave after one or two blinks. They are great.

Not spancered by Ciba Vision :D
 

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I can't speak to brands, but I wear contacts & always wear the wrap around sunglasses that I use for cycling. They have good eye coverage & you can switch lens based on the lighting. I keep my eyes open going through waves and holes and never have problems. I never liked the idea of wearing prescription glasses because you have no backup if they: fog, break, get lost and you tend to lose some precision in the optics. I learned to roll closing my eyes underwater from day one so I don't know if having them open really helps or not - seems like if you're lucky you'll be seeing the deck of your boat, and if you're unlikely you'll see a big swirly bubbly mess.
 

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Id725 said:
I think it is a good practice to have your eyes open when you're under water - it's better for your roll.
Interesting. I've never kept my eyes open. But I taught a friend to roll years ago in a pool. I saw him a few years later and he mentioned that he had some problems with his combat roll, but that it finally improved once he stopped opening his eyes under water. It seems that he was a bit freaked out by what he saw whizzing by his head, which made it difficult to concentrate on the roll. When I was teaching him, I never suggested that he open his eyes, and he never told me he was. He just assumed that he should, while the thought never occurred to me.

Back on the topic at hand: A friend of mine wears disposable contacts. They're fairly inexpensive, so losing them isn't much of a problem.
 

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I use the disposable contacts (generic kind, but similar to Acuvue) and haven't had any problems with sights except after paddling for a while (2+ hours), my contacts start sticking to the eyes due to lack of oxygen and then just a little bit of eye drops in both eyes helps--I tend to keep a little bottle of drops in my PFD for that reason...I find that sunglasses help a bit too, but I've lost my paddling glasses, so need to get new ones...
 

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i definitely wouldn't recommend wearing prescription glasses while paddling, before you know it they'll be so dirty you won't be able to see much anyway. that's what always happened to me anyway, plus it sucked when i hit my face on a rock and smashed the glasses.
 

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Regarding eyes open under water:

For me, a key in learning my roll was having my head follow my paddle blade. That turbo-charged my sweep, and kept my whole body in good position throughout the sweep motion. Whenever my roll starts to lose its spark, I make sure I'm keeping my eyes open and it helps me. Plus, it's a good way for beginners to make sure they're starting their roll from the proper set-up position - if they can see that their blade is on top of the water, at the front of their boat, flat, etc... And, anybody who gets "freaked out" by what they see whizzing by ..... Dunno, that seems like a bad trait for a kayaker. Just because you close your eyes and don't see the rocks and the swirlies, and your poorly set up roll, doesn't mean they're not a reality. I want to see what's going on with the river, with my boat, with my technique...

Regarding the glasses again -- I've worn mine for about 75 trips down the river, a fair amount of class 4, brown water, green water, low volume, huge volume. Never had em get "dirty" while I paddled, never had em come anywhere close to breaking (I make not hitting my face on rocks a priority), never come anywhere close to losing them on the river, .... I dunno. They sure work for me. Lasik would be nice, but I can't afford that....
 

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If you can afford it do LASIK. I am such a happier mountain bum without peeling dry contacts off my eyeballs after long weekends....
 

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Discussion Starter #13
O.K., I think Lasik is the answer.

Hey y'all!!! I went out this weekend and tried all of the suggestions (except surgery). Unfortunately, I had problems with them all. My prescription glasses don't really give me any peripheral vision. The Night and Day's were pretty cool, but still a pain. Paddling without either is a bad scene (can't see the eddy lines or rocks until I am on top of them). I think I am going to check into Lasik. Can anyone give me some references for sugeons?

Also, I don't understand why you would want to keep your eyes open under water. Usually my first concern is getting upright as soon as possible. What do you do when you see a rock? Can you avoid it? I think I would be looking directly at my skirt and not see anything anyway (with any luck). Just curious. :wink:
 

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i wear gas permiable contacts at night when i sleep that change the shape of my corneas. i take them out in the morning and see great all day without other correction. surgery is pretty safe, but if it goes wrong... email me if you want the name of my eye doc as few offer this as an option.
 
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