WAG Eyeglasses and gymnastics

Parents... Coaches... Gymnasts...
Gymnastics Questions?
Don't Lurk... We've Got Answers!

New For 2022
MEMBERS ONLY Parent Group!
Join for FREE!
Status
Not open for further replies.

JoyAvenueMom

Proud Parent
Aug 24, 2012
525
Central US
DD wears glasses to correct near sightedness and an astigmatism all the time....except at the gym. At her last eye appt. in March, I was surprised by how much worse her vision has become. (Unfortunately, I am nearly blind myself, so I am sure it will only get worse for her.) I'm not sure at what point I should make her wear her glasses for gymnastics, or how wearing them will affect her performance. If she is going to wear them, can anyone recommend a particular type of strap to hold them on? I made a strap for her, and she wore them for a few practices then stopped. She will turn 9 this summer, and I think she is responsible enough for contact lenses. However, she has sensitive eyes, and won't even discuss the possibility at this point. I haven't seen other gymnasts wearing glasses...but my experience is rather limited.
 

Iwannabemargo

Numpty Watcher
Proud Parent
Aug 28, 2011
6,962
UK
There is a local gymnast who wears glasses, propper bottle tops at that too. The competition before last we all watched as she competed her tuck back on floor and her glasess flew off half way round. The next competition she had a neoprean strap, the glasses stayed on ( but the hair came out). I think it was something like this


$%28KGrHqN,%21hUE1fl+WICvBNnEy5O9pQ%7E%7E_1.JPG
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 person

gymgurl

Coach
Gymnast
Oct 4, 2009
1,417
There are a few girls that wear glasses in the gym, one I coach and her glasses have never fallen off without a strap and that includes front somis. Another is a level five gymnast in the squad below me and she always wears her glasses with no strap and they never seem to fall off. I think she has them made quite small (tight) around her head for this exact reason
 

Flipomaniak

Gymnast
Jun 25, 2012
305
USA
I had a friend that now wears contacts but wore her glasses for her whole gymnastics career except for the last 2 years. She wore them up to level 8, while working level 9 skills and somehow her glasses never fell off... Maybe have your dd try gym with the glasses and if they fall look into a strap or get something like this:

Zenni Optical - Eyeglasses, 740324 Prescription Sports Glasses Glasses

Might look a little funny but I know quite a few girls who would wear these.

The best option is in fact contacts though so she should get those when she can.
 
May 9, 2012
481
USA
I have really bad vision too and I wouldn't even think about contacts until last year. I wear my glasses when I'm doing gymnastics at the house and have never had a problem with them not staying on, my biggest concern about wearing them at the gym would be breaking them, since I land on my face far too much. I just went without glasses at the gym until it finally got too hard and I had to get contacts. It took a while to get used to them, but now they work perfectly.
So I don't really know what the point of my whole post was... I guess maybe just that if she does decide to wear glasses, she should also be careful to not break them.
 

gymgal

Gold Membership
Proud Parent
Aug 22, 2008
4,515
We have a couple of girls who wear them in our gym. No straps. Dd started wearing contacts at 10. She hated eye drops. Hated anything by her eyes. But the one time she voided a vault b/c she thought the judge saluted her (she couldn't see at the end but thought she saw a hand go up.), she decided, come heck or high water, she would be wearing contacts by the next season. So give her a shot with the contacts if she thinks she might like to try it.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 2 people

bogwoppit

Gold Membership
Feb 26, 2007
16,885
Mine wore glasses all the way through to about L6 and then when she moved on to cheer. She never had any issue with the lightweight wire frames. But the more fashionable square plastic frames required a sport strap and still were not awesome. If possible stick to the lightweight frames or if you an afford it buy a second pair for sports. At 14 mine still does not like contacts.
 
C

CoachGoofy

I wore glasses the majority of my career-without them I a) have no depth perception and b) couldn't reliably discriminate the equipment from the stuff around it. This is bad for both artistic & T&T!

Once my rx stopped changing as quickly, I invested in a gymnastics pair in addition to my daily pair, since I had that opportunity (insurance was buying glasses every year, my rx was the same, why not?). They were titanium and the arms were long enough to wrap around my ears snugly so I didn't neeeeeeeed a strap.

When I only had one pair, I did try a strap but when I had them snugly fitted I didn't find it all that helpful. I only lost them at a meet once, which isn't bad given how long I competed...
 

gympunkin

Proud Parent
Sep 3, 2010
35
My 10 year old level 5 dd has been wearing glasses for gymnastics for about 18 months now. She wears a wire frame brand called Flexon. These are the glasses that can be tied in a knot. It is extremely difficult to break them, or bend them out of shape. They stay on without a strap. So far, they have never come off and have not even slipped down her nose a little. We got them in a matte color called dusty rose and they are not too noticeable.

DD did not want to wear them at first, but I made her, and it really improved her enjoyment of gymnastics. She was amazed to see how much was going on all around her in the gym. She was able to see the optional girls practicing for the first time.

I think it must have helped her performance. She specifically mentioned that it helped to be able to see the coach's demonstrations clearly and also to watch the other girls in her training group and hear from the coach what those girls were doing well and what corrections they needed to make. She also mentioned that she could not see the end of the vault run before she got glasses. It took her a little while to adjust to that.

We found the Flexon frames by showing our optician a YouTube video of Kamerin Moore competing as a junior elite wearing glasses (which never move). Watching the video also helped by dd feel better about wearing glasses.

Good luck!
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 person

GymBeeMom

Proud Parent
Jul 12, 2012
487
My DD is blind as a bat. She wore her glasses for level 4 and went to contacts at summer between level 4 and level 5. She was very young (6, turning 7) and scared at first but as soon as she put them in, she was hooked. She said she sees so much better with contacts. That being said, as a level 4 she wore her glasses and they never fell off. She did use a strap for competition but not for practice.
 

Amusibus

Proud Parent
Aug 16, 2012
648
Pennsylvania
My 10 year old level 5 dd has been wearing glasses for gymnastics for about 18 months now. She wears a wire frame brand called Flexon. These are the glasses that can be tied in a knot. It is extremely difficult to break them, or bend them out of shape. They stay on without a strap. So far, they have never come off and have not even slipped down her nose a little. We got them in a matte color called dusty rose and they are not too noticeable.

DD did not want to wear them at first, but I made her, and it really improved her enjoyment of gymnastics. She was amazed to see how much was going on all around her in the gym. She was able to see the optional girls practicing for the first time.

I think it must have helped her performance. She specifically mentioned that it helped to be able to see the coach's demonstrations clearly and also to watch the other girls in her training group and hear from the coach what those girls were doing well and what corrections they needed to make. She also mentioned that she could not see the end of the vault run before she got glasses. It took her a little while to adjust to that.

We found the Flexon frames by showing our optician a YouTube video of Kamerin Moore competing as a junior elite wearing glasses (which never move). Watching the video also helped by dd feel better about wearing glasses.

Good luck!

Interesting... maybe I should have my daughter wear hers for practice. She has bad eyesight (20/80 on one side, 20/20 on the other), and doc is having her use atropine eye drops three days a week (non-gym days) which blur her vision on her good side and this is supposed to strengthen the bad eye. I wonder if she'd feel relieved like this to be able to see all the little details. What caught my attention in what you said above was how your daughter was able to pay better attention with the glasses on. We could use all the help we can get in that area!! Mine also has a more rare eye condition called Brown's syndrome where her right eye cannot go upwards, so looking up she gets double vision. This is uncorrecrable except through surgery..... To the OP, I have seen plenty of girls around the gym with glasses and a strap, it doesn't seem to be all that unusual.
 

magymmom

Proud Parent
Apr 27, 2012
115
Region 3
My dd wore her glasses for 1 competition season at level 4 but got contacts and loves them, they are so thin that she hardly feels them and she also has sensitive eyes. The year she wore them they were a lightweight plastic frame that had a snug fit, she tried a strap and hated the strap but never had a problem with them flying off, it was me that wanted her to get contacts being worried that she might fall and get injured worse by the glasses or might break them.
 

pinkos98

Gymnast
May 29, 2012
66
My coach makes a makeshift strap for one of my teammates with a thin headband...


Sent from my iPod touch using ChalkBucket mobile app :)
 

gwenmom

Proud Parent
Jan 24, 2013
538
Dd wears glasses even to practice. Honestly I do think it has limited her some because of the peripheral visions issues. She was struggling with her BHS and we recently got her contacts and suddenly the BHS is clicking and looking good. She is 7 and DH has to put the contacts in but she can remove the herself. She is blind as a bat without either her glasses or contacts

I would definitely suggest contacts.
 

teksquad

Proud Parent
Dec 13, 2012
238
My daughter has worn glasses for about 9 months now, for every practice, and at every meet this past season. She wears a strap that we bought in the optical department at Wal-Mart, and they have never fallen off. ( We bought a second pair for her during a really great back-to-school frame sale last year.) Having a pair just for gymnastics is great, and we can keep the strap snug on the earpieces, because she doesn't take them off this pair . Like some of the posters here, she is nearsighted, and was having trouble seeing corrections from her coaches, the clocks on the wall, and the vault at the end of the runway. Glasses has made all the difference in the world. She does find them uncomfortable on the nose bridge (I guess the strap pulls the glasses to her face), and she has fallen on them before, but they have not broken. (she has shatter-resistant lenses, and the frame has held up well)

Another problem she has occasionally is hitting the sides of the glasses during beam (with her arms up, covering her ears), and seeing over the tops of her lenses while doing cartwheels or backwalkovers on beam. (which confuses her vision a bit). Because of these two things especially, she wants to try contacts. I am encouraged to read of girls in this thread tolerating contacts well.

Then again, taking care of newly pierced ears, as well as removing and putting in earrings, was tough for her for awhile this year, so I can imagine that contacts must be harder to get used to than this?
 
Last edited:

Seeker

Proud Parent
Aug 30, 2012
6,687
USA
My daughter started wearing glasses last fall. She never wore them for practice, but it was quickly obvious that she needed to. She did L6 this season and is getting to the point where she's learning harder skills so it's kind of important that she could see! Vault was the biggest issue...it affected her run because she couldn't see it til she was right there (her prescription got progressively worse rather quickly).

So I went on the hunt for contacts and we wound up getting OrthoK lenses. They are hard, gas permeable lenses and they are worn only at night. They correct the shape of the cornea in order to correct vision, kind of like retainers for the eyes. She can see well all day long. I like them because she doesn't have to wear them when she's not with me (she's only 9) and they can also help prevent the progression of myopia. She can put them in and take them out on her own (I stand by for support, but she can do it all herself). She's had them since February and so far, it's been really great. She loves being able to see and not having to wear glasses all the time.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 person

teksquad

Proud Parent
Dec 13, 2012
238
Thank you for posting about the OrthoK lenses, Seeker! I didn't know that contacts can be used as "retainers for the eyes" to reshape the cornea for the next day's vision! I am impressed and encouraged that your nine-year-old daughter manages them on her own, too! How was the learning curve for her to learn to use them? Were they painful at first?
 

gymgal

Gold Membership
Proud Parent
Aug 22, 2008
4,515
seeker, those lenses sound great! Do you know what the range of correction is for them? Does she ever complain about them, like if her eyes are irritated when she wakes? Our ophthalmologist has warn my kids not to wear their contacts at night because they are risk for an eye condition I have, but I assume these are different and since they aren't worn during the day, the wear time is about the same.
 

Seeker

Proud Parent
Aug 30, 2012
6,687
USA
It was honestly much easier than expected. They do not hurt or bother her at all. It was a bit difficult the first time when the Dr put them in for her to see how we'll she would tolerate them and if she was a good candidate. It is easier to put something in your own eye than it is to have someone else do it, so she mastered it pretty fast. Probably the first two weeks took more time to get them in and out, but now she is seriously fast. Taking them out was actually harder than getting them in, but it's easy now. She does it all on her own, but she wanted them and they make life better for her, so she's fine with it.

We found a great Dr to work with so that has made it easier too (we do drive about 40 mins, but it is worth it). Initially, there are several appointments but once you hit the 2 month mark it slows down. Maintenance is twice a year. Overall, we are happy with it and I didn't even know it existed before January. It's pretty cool. :)
 

Seeker

Proud Parent
Aug 30, 2012
6,687
USA
The range that they can correct is pretty wide and the contacts are designed for night-wear so I don't think there is a worry there. This has been around in Asia for more than 20 years...slightly less here, but it isn't super wide-spread so if you're interested in it, be sure to find someone who specializes in this -- it is not something I'd trust with someone who didn't have a large % of their practice devoted to or someone that was just starting out. But she is corrected to 20/20 and she started at 20/100 so that is pretty good.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 2 people
Status
Not open for further replies.