The best way to help your golf game? Good vision!

by Dr. Roxanna Potter, FLT Columnist

 I get a lot of complaints about the various demands that golf places on one’s eyes and vision. Golf requires you be able to watch a small ball fly at great speeds and distances, but also be able to look down at the ground and line up a putt. It’s played under varying lighting conditions, from dusky mornings to bright sunny days, from cloudy days to evening twilight. And the colors and contrast on the course can be challenging for even the best pair of sunglasses. You also need to be able to read your score card (or at least order a drink at lunch after the game)!

Golfers will spend a great deal of money on the newest technology in clubs, balls, gloves, shoes, etc. but overlook the importance of proper eyewear. First, you need an accurate, up-to-date eye exam and prescription. Next, I often recommend Transitions lenses; these are the lenses that darken depending on lighting conditions. They go from completely clear indoors to slightly darker during early morning, evening or on cloudy days, and darken fully in bright sun. They come in various tints, but there is a specific tint that is recommended to give the best contrast out on the green, along with a mirrored surface to reduce reflections and allow for easy surface cleaning. They also provide full UV protection against degenerative eye disease. Other sunglass options include clip-on lenses for even darker coverage, or polarization for courses with a great deal of water/glare.

For the over-40 crowd, bifocals often get in the way of looking down to putt, chip or drive.  The Definity brand progressive bifocal is a blended bifocal with the option of a trademarked “GroundView Advantage” opening of mid-range vision at the bottom of the lens that helps with this distance. It allows for more natural head and body position while looking down at the ground, while still giving enough reading power to check the score care or read a menu. Lastly, there are numerous multifocal contact lenses that can eliminate the need for bifocal glasses altogether (though you’ll still need sunglasses, and it’s best to have some sort of impact-resistant eyewear on to prevent blunt trauma/eye injury from stray balls)! Ask your eye doctor or come visit me at Personal Eyecare for a recommendation!

Dr. Roxanna Potter is the owner of Personal Eyecare in Sylvania. You can contact her at 419-885-5300; email her at rpotter@personaleyecare.com; or visit the website at http://www.personaleyecare.com.