Eye On Sports: Sports Eyewear for Youth

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By Matt Harris
Like anything else picking out eyewear for use in sports starts with a list of priorities.
What is most important, and what follows that top item on the list?
Is it all about style? As important as that can be in making a selection, especially when kids are concerned, that shouldn’t be at the top. Things like safety, comfort, clarity of vision and Ultraviolet protection are up there—at least according to those within the industry.
Jessica Bouthillier, the Optifog & Transition Brand Manager from Essilor Canada, ranks UV protection right at the top of the list, but other items aren’t far behind.
“Did you know that 80 per cent of UV damage occurs before the age of 18—children and teenagers are even more at risk and it’s therefore important to protect kids’ eyes from harmful UV rays,” she said. “People should look for eyewear that comes with 100 per cent built-in UV protection.”
American Academy of Opthalmology reports that more than 100,000 people sustain eye injuries each year. The weight of a lens plays a crucial role in how heavy kids eyewear feels. People should be looking for lenses that are made from lighter and safer material.
Bouthillier added that clarity of vision is something that should be ranked highly when picking out sports eyewear.
“Eighty-six per cent of people complain about bright light and glare—that can reduce the level of performance or enjoyment of outdoor activities,” she said.
“Other situations such as fog on the lens can become an unexpected blindfold, greatly limiting vision.”
Essilor has been working hard to create awareness about how the sun’s rays are dangerous for visual health at any age, and Bouthillier said they are focusing their efforts on making the best kids solutions as they can. Products such as the Xperio Lens and Airwear Lenses from Essilor are just two examples of how the company is striving to reach their goal in this area.

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