Why you need to protect your eyes while cycling

Cycling is an exciting sport, perfect for those who enjoy exploring the outdoors while also working their bodies. It is important to practise safety while cycling, and protecting your eyes is pertinent for any weather conditions.

Sunglasses that are made for cycling are more than just eyewear that looks cool, they are manufactured to protect your eyes from the sun and from any possible damage from flying stones or gravel. Below are some of the reasons why protecting your eyes while cycling is important.

Beware of flying objects

When cycling at a high speed, there is a potential for stones, dirt and debris that can be kicked up from cycling both on and off-road. For ease of aerodynamics, cyclists choose not to have much on their heads but cycling eyewear is essential for eye safety and sun protection.

Flying insects can also be harmful to cyclists, as they may sting the eye area or cause enough distraction for a cyclist to swerve off the path and injure themselves. Many lenses of cycling eyewear are made of Polycarbonate and are scratch and shatter resistant, meaning that they will not be damaged should flying objects hit them. You will also find that insects cannot enter through the sides of modern wrap-around sunglasses.

Wind power

Wind can be highly annoying to cyclists, especially the wind that is gathered on a downhill route. The wind can cause your eyes to water painfully and you may have to squint against this watering in order to see.

This irritation is caused because the cornea is highly sensitive, and when it is irritated it will trigger the eye to tear in an effort to remove the irritation. Windy, cold and wet weather are the biggest culprits for causing eyes to tear, but with modern cycling eyewear, you will be able to protect your eyes, especially with the wrap-around models that are becoming more popular.

UV and sun protection

This is fairly obvious but sun protection for eyes is often overlooked. The damage that the sun can cause to your eyes includes ailments such as cataracts, macular degeneration and photokeratitis.

Whether you are spending 30 minutes or three hours in the saddle, you need to protect your eyes while cycling. Not only will you keep the UV rays at bay, but cycling eyewear is also geared towards eliminating the glare caused by the sun, making riding on sunny days easier. If you are going to be riding at higher altitudes during the day when the sun is at its hottest (between 10:00 am and 14:00 pm) you will need to ensure you wear sunglasses as sun damage risk is higher at these times.

Weather conditions

Wearing sunglasses on sunny and hot days is ideal for those conditions, but on cooler and more overcast days, tinted lenses are not efficient and can inhibit your vision. Cycling eyewear is specially designed to be usable in all weather conditions, with interchangeable lenses.

Some lenses are treated to be rain-proof, meaning that the rain droplets will simply slide off rather than gather and become detrimental to your vision. You can find other sprays in glasses stores to ensure that fog and mist are also not obstacles when cycling, but nowadays many modern glasses are already treated. It is vital to be able to see in all weather conditions when cycling to avoid injury.

Wider field of view

While cycling, you have to be able to look both in front of you and around you in order to avoid obstacles, but if you have to look into a sunny spot with uncovered eyes, this can prove difficult. Wearing cycling eyewear allows you a wider field of view with their wraparound style.

Competitive cyclists need to have a full range of view, especially on unknown terrain which is wearing the right kind of eyewear is so important. You will be able to clearly see the path in front of you and any surroundings around you, which can improve your reflexes and make you a better cyclist. It will also allow you to enjoy the scenery on a leisurely ride.

No more tired eyes

Cycling can be an intense sport, tiring you out after a difficult session. However, many people do not consider their eyes as important and so can end up with tired and painful eyes after a particularly long ride in the sun or in cooler conditions.

If you prefer riding in the sun, and you do not wear specific cycling eyewear, you may find your eyes are tired and painful. To remedy this, wear sunglasses that are made to deflect glare and protect from UV rays. In winter weather when it is overcast, avoid wearing tinted lenses which will make your eyes work harder to see in darker conditions. Having tired eyes will make your cycling endeavours less enjoyable and difficult to manoeuvre.