CHILDREN'S VISION & SPORTS

Indoor and outdoor sports are an enjoyable and important part of most children's lives. Whether playing catch in the back yard or participating in team sports at school, vision plays an important role in how well a child performs.

Specific visual skills needed for sports include:

 

  • Clear distance vision

  • Good depth perception 

  • Wide field of vision

  • Effective eye-hand coordination

 

A child who consistently underperforms a certain skill in a sport, such as always hitting the front of the rim in basketball or swinging late at a pitched ball in baseball, may have a vision problem. If visual skills are not adequate, the child may continue to perform poorly. Correction of vision problems with eyeglasses or contact lenses, or a program of eye exercises called vision therapy can correct many vision problems, enhance vision skills and improve sports vision performance. 

 

Eye protection should also be a major concern to all student athletes, especially in certain high-risk sports. Thousands of children suffer sports-related eye injuries each year and nearly all can be prevented by using the proper protective eyewear. 

Regular prescription eyeglasses or contact lenses are not a substitute for appropriate, well-fitted protective eyewear. Athletes need to use sports eyewear that is tailored to protect their eyes while playing their specific sport.  In addition, many sports are played outdoors, thus it is also important for all children to protect their eyes from damage caused by ultraviolet radiation in sunlight by wearing UV protection grade sunglasses or transition lenses when appropriate.

(Source: American Academy of Optometry

https://www.aoa.org/patients-and-public/good-vision-throughout-life/childrens-vision/school-aged-vision-6-to-18-years-of-age)

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