Home > Basic Equipment > Wearing Shades Isn't Just About Looking Cool

Wearing Shades Isn't Just About Looking Cool

By: Mike Kiely BA (hons) - Updated: 10 Jun 2010 | comments*Discuss
 
Shades Oakley Adidas Fashion Glare Sun

The old sweats who have been pounding the streets and parkways for more years than they care to remember may issue a contemptuous guffaw of laughter, but the increasing number of runners who choose to wear a pair of shades during the summer months is on the increase.

Now, it would be reasonable to assume that a proportion of those opting for Oakley, Adidas or another of the famous names are doing so for purely aesthetic reasons. Let’s face it, sportswear is a global industry and draws much of its annual turnover from customers who wear the big brands because they are associated as much with fame and celebrity as they are with the best performers on track and field.

So, yes there are going to be those more concerned about how they look than how their recovery rate stands at the end of a five miler.

Tackling Glare

However to dismiss every runner who opts for a pair of shades as a lightweight, more concerned with following fashion than a schedule designed to bring tangible results in terms of athletic ability, is rather simplistic. Shades are a useful accessory – not only in terms of tackling glare and forming a barrier between the sun’s rays and the eyes, but also preventing dust, grit and small insects from causing a sudden painful sensation and the need to stop while the foreign body is removed and vision is restored.

Talking of vision, for runners with less than 20:20 who already possess a prescription, opting to invest in a pair of shades for running means there is no more need to compromise on clarity when on the move. It goes without saying that when running in an urban environment, surrounded by pedestrians, cyclists and cars, such clarity is especially important. An alternative is to wear non-prescription lenses combined with contacts but the potential problem of perspiration running into the eye and causing irritation can be an issue here.

Brands and Styles

With so many brands and styles to choose from, the decisions behind an individual purchase are many and varied. However, there are one or two key areas that should be at the forefront of your mind. Take design, as an example: does the frame of one pair offer a greater or lesser field of vision than another? And what about comfort - is there cushioning on the bridge of the nose? Will the arms guarantee that the pair will fit snugly and not move around once you pick up speed or negotiate rougher terrain? Don’t forget the weight of the shades, too: for those not used to wearing glasses on a regular basis, the sensation of wearing eyewear can prove something of a distraction.

Running shades really are a useful item in an athlete’s armoury, witness the number of professionals who use them. Ok, you may get the occasional accusation of fashion victim thrown at you, but ultimately it is about what works for you and improves your performance. Chances are you won’t catch any of those unfortunate remarks as you will be too far ahead to be within earshot.

You might also like...
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice..
Why not be the first to leave a comment for discussion, ask for advice or share your story...

If you'd like to ask a question one of our experts (workload permitting) or a helpful reader hopefully can help you... We also love comments and interesting stories

Title:
(never shown)
Firstname:
(never shown)
Surname:
(never shown)
Email:
(never shown)
Nickname:
(shown)
Comment:
Validate:
Enter word:
Topics
Latest Comments
  • Nannyanne
    Re: The Women's Running Network
    Hello, I'm looking for a supportive running group in Crawley, west ex for women.. I've been running for less than a year, started…
    26 November 2019
  • Mandy
    Re: The Women's Running Network
    Hello, I'm looking for a running group in Exeter that I may be able to join in with. Daytime is also possible. Have done a bit of…
    9 November 2019
  • Rosie
    Re: The Women's Running Network
    Please “were do you run from I am 47 and want to start running I work Thursday Friday a sat I need to get motivated again and so…
    24 October 2019
  • Linny
    Re: The Women's Running Network
    Is there a women’s running club in or near Cardiff- beginners level.
    8 October 2019
  • clara
    Re: The Women's Running Network
    Hi, I prefer running with others. Please could you let me about any women's running clubs in and around Lancashire. Thank you Clare
    22 July 2019
  • Chrissy
    Re: The Women's Running Network
    Do you have any beginner clubs in the dunvant, killay or gowerton areas?
    22 July 2019
  • Lisa
    Re: The Women's Running Network
    Hi there I am a beginner and would like to join a group local to teignmouth. Does anyone know if the nearest group to…
    3 January 2019
  • Jessica
    Re: The Women's Running Network
    Hi. Is there anything in the Torbay area? Many thanks.
    26 November 2018
  • Tammy
    Re: The Women's Running Network
    Hi, also trying to find out if Swansea groups still going? Thanks.
    7 October 2018
  • Rach
    Re: The Women's Running Network
    Hi I live in the Wolverhampton WV8 area and wondered if you have any activities running close to me please? Thank you Rachel.
    3 September 2018