If you wear glasses, you’ll probably want to know if you can wear them to play certain sports. Depending on the sport (for example, if it’s a contact sport), it may or may not be a good idea.
So, can you wear glasses while playing volleyball? Yes – however, although it’s not against the rules, it’s actually not recommended. As the FIVB Official Volleyball Rules state: “Players may wear glasses or lenses at their own risk”.
Yikes. So why is it not recommended? Although volleyball isn’t a contact sport, there’s a lot of fast-paced action amongst teammates. And there’s always a really good chance that a player will get a spike in the face. I’ve seen it happen many times, and yes, it’s happened to me, too!
I can hear you asking – well, I need to wear glasses to see properly. Does that mean I can’t play volleyball? Nope, not at all. In fact, being able to see as well as possible can even improve your game!
When I started playing volleyball in high school, I thought I was just really bad at passing the serve. (In other words, when the other team served the ball and I was the first one to bump it.) I was constantly too slow to get to the ball, and as a result, my bumps were always really horrible.
It wasn’t until I started wearing contact lenses on the volleyball court that my passing seemed to improve overnight! Now I could actually see the ball from the time that the server started their serve – not just by the time it came over the net! This made a huge improvement in my skills as a volleyball player.
Listed below are some great options for those players who require corrective eyewear. Note that while wearing glasses might be your only option, you can still take some precautions to maximize your safety and comfort.
There are some precautionary measures while playing with glasses that we need to know. There are also some alternatives to glasses that we can use to avoid the risk of glasses breaking if (when!) we get hit on the face. Remember we have to be comfortable to show off our skills!
Wearing regular glasses
Wearing regular glasses for volleyball might just be your only option. This could be because of your prescription, your budget, or maybe you’re a recreational player who only plays volleyball occasionally and it doesn’t make sense to invest in other options.
You can still enjoy the sport of volleyball while wearing regular glasses! Just be sure to consider the following when wearing regular glasses during sports:
- Glasses frames should be comfortable and well-fitted, and the lenses should be large enough for a good view from multiple angles
- Consider using a strap so that glasses don’t fly off when making fast movements
- Have cleaning material nearby to wipe glasses easily. Glasses can get sweaty, too! And the whole point is being able to see better, so you need to keep the lenses clean
- Being able to see better!
- Eyeglasses can prevent the entry of debris in our eyes
- We cannot get poked by someone’s finger while wearing glasses
- It is fine to wear them when we can’t bear the expenses of contact or sports glasses
- Eyeglasses can break easily when the ball hits a player’s face. Not only does this result in broken glasses, it can cause injuries to the face and/or eyes
- Regular glasses are not intended for fast movements and so can fall off the face with fast movements
- Sports headgear will not fit precisely over eyeglasses
- They can fog up once you get sweaty
Prescription sports glasses are more safe and durable
Optometrists recommend using a pair of prescription sports glasses while playing sports. They are designed to withstand a sudden hit. Also, these durable lenses and frames are safe to wear without causing any eye injury.
Available online and in-person, prescription sports glasses are specially designed for both professionals and enthusiastic players. They are vision corrective glasses as well as protective devices.
They are made up of simple light-weight material like polycarbonate and provide more benefits than safety goggles. You can also select various brands of prescription sports glasses depending on your budget.
- They provide better peripheral vision than eyeglasses
- Less risk of shifting around the face with fast movements
- They will not shatter due to their highly resistant and durable material
- They might be too bulky to use with headgear
- Some prescription sport glasses produce reflection, which is somewhat troublesome
- They can make us uncomfortable while playing
- They can still fog up once you get sweaty
- Can be an added expense
Tips for the right selection of sports glasses
Whether you go for prescription sports glasses or regular glasses, comfort is the main key to enjoying ourselves on the sports ground. Here are some tips we should know about choosing the right glasses for sports activities:
- Go light. Heavy eyewear is uncomfortable. Choose the lightest frames and lenses for your budget
- Make sure to fit the glasses properly. It can be difficult to play if our eyewear is continuously slipping down. Be sure to fit sports glasses snugly
- Make sure to check eyesight regularly and update your prescription accordingly to ensure that you are maximizing your corrective vision
- Take care of your glasses! They will help them last longer
Contact lenses as an alternative
Contact lenses and sports complement each other like peanut butter and jelly. It is the more advantageous and safer option for athletes. It also makes it easier than other eyewear protection devices without the bulk of eyeglasses underneath.
Being able to see well without impediment will boost your confidence and help you to achieve the best possible performance.
Contact lenses were my preferred choice for years. They provided an unrestricted view of the court (no frames with surrounding fuzziness!) and made it possible for me to concentrate 100% on the game, not on making sure my eyewear was in the right place or fogging up.
Soft lenses are considered more appropriate for sports as they are less likely to dislodge than RGP (Rigid Gas Permeable). Daily disposable soft lenses are more convenient, as cleaning solutions are not needed; this makes them particularly suited for part-time wear.
- Contact lenses provide a clear peripheral vision
- Fogging and reflection is not an issue in the case of contact lenses
- They will not break in our eyes to cause any injury
- Contact lenses won’t shift around on your face
- Debris and dust particles can still affect your eyes while wearing contact lenses and playing sports like volleyball
- They cost more than eyeglasses as we have to replace them regularly
- Good idea to bring a backup pair and extra solution
- Contact lenses might cause dry eyes
- There is an increased risk of corneal infections
If you do decide to go with contact lenses, be sure to follow all the safety and cleaning procedures, like not wearing them past the recommended number of hours and cleaning and storing them properly.
Here’s a great example of what NOT to do. Once during a game, one of my teammates lost her contact lenses on the court. Amazingly, she was able to find it again. However, instead of asking for a time out so that she could wash her hands and rinse the contact lens with a solution, she just went ahead and PUT IT BACK ON HER EYE. Ugh.
This is so not recommended. Your hands and the floor are full of debris and who knows what else. This is a sure-fire way to risk infection or at a minimum scratching your eye.
Lasik Treatment (Laser eye surgery)
Ahh, the gold standard of corrective vision options. Everyone wants to enjoy the convenience of normal vision permanently without contact lenses or corrective glasses. Lasik might be a good choice in this case. The Lasik procedure uses lasers to correct imperfections of the cornea for a clearer vision.
Remember that Lasik is a surgical procedure, so all the potential risks need to be considered and weighed against the resulting convenience.
I had Lasik done last year, so I can personally attest to how convenient all aspects of life are now, including sports. HOWEVER, before deciding on undergoing Lasik, I researched all the potential short and long term side effects and I also talked to anyone I could who had also undergone the surgery.
It took me years to make up my mind – and if I’m being honest, to find the courage to undergo the surgery. For anyone considering Lasik, I highly recommend you do the same – do your research and talk to anyone you can who has also had Lasik.
This is a permanent surgery, not an overnight decision, so do your homework on this one.
Lasik surgery also requires a period of recovering during which you need to alter your physical lifestyle. This needs to be considered if sports and physical activity are a regular part of your life.
If you do decide to undergo Lasik surgery, consider scheduling it so that the recovery period falls in the off-season of your sports.
- It is a convenient option without the daily hassle of glasses or contact lenses
- Lasik should provide clear and surgically corrected accurate vision
- With the help of Lasik, you can compete or practice in any weather condition without any fear of hampered vision
- Lasik is a surgical procedure for which you may physically not be eligible
- Some side effects may be permanent, and they can make you uncomfortable
- If your vision continues to change, you may need a Lasik treatment again
- Requires a period of recovery time during which you need to alter your physical lifestyle
Do professional athletes wear glasses?
Many athletes wear contact lenses in sports, so it is entirely possible to manage vision problems along with enjoying a good physical life. Sports glasses are not as convenient and common as contact lenses.
Should I wear glasses while running?
Many people wear contact lenses instead of glasses while running. However, you can still run while wearing your glasses, but it will create more hassle, such as fogging up or slipping down your nose when you get sweaty.
How can I stop my glasses from slipping when I sweat?
Flexible and transparent strips are available nowadays that can be applied as a bridge on the nose. Once applied, it is designed to prevent glasses from slipping off your nose irrespective of how much you sweat or move. You don’t need to use headbands or nose pads. Use it easily when you want and enjoy every sport without any worry.
Can you rub your eyes while wearing contact lenses?
No, don’t rub your eyes while wearing contact lenses. This can be dangerous for your cornea, which can lead to serious damage to your vision.
How can I tighten my glasses?
You can take your glasses to the store from where you bought them for a free adjustment. Or you can also adjust them yourself with the proper glasses tightening kit
There are a lot of options for people who need corrective vision and play sports. Take the time to choose the option that is best for you. And regardless of which option you do choose, be sure to follow all the recommended advice from your optometrist – your eyes will thank you!