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Polarised Lenses for Cycling

When it comes to shopping for your next pair of cycling glasses, you may be wondering whether or not you should invest in polarised lenses or not.  It’s a common question and the answer is that it really depends on your own preference.

Some cyclists do prefer them, especially if they spend a lot of time in direct sunlight and have to contend with glare affecting their vision.  It may not be typical to choose a polarised lens as a cyclist but if you live near the ocean or cycle around large bodies of water and deal a lot with the sun then you may lean towards them more.  When it comes to depth perception, the effect will vary and depend person to person, although it’s not a significant concern for many.

They can however make some digital displays harder to read, especially if you have an older bike or you navigate with your phone.  Most modern cycling computers are designed to be compatible however.

It’s all such a personal choice!

If you do a lot of road riding you may wish to consider that a polarised lens may not pick up reflective obstructions or hazards, such as potholes so easily as a contrast enhancing lens.  If you move through more patches of shade and enjoy trails rather with little glare, you may feel that the polarised lens is more of a detriment to your performance and enjoyment.

Last thing you need is to spot that obstacle or bump in the terrain once it’s too late!

For sports cycling however, you may enjoy better visibility with them.  They are also excellent for mountain biking as they filter out intense glare easily.  Especially if you are around water, snow and metallic objects.

Whatever you choose, your performance eyewear is designed to integrate seamlessly into your ride; it should provide protection from UV rays and debris without you even realising it’s there.  You’ll need protection from dust and bugs in the Summer, and potentially wind, rain and road spray, and even snow in the Winter!  We don’t know just how hardcore you are and getting out no matter what!

Of course you want to make sure you’re looking good too – we’ve got you covered on that front!

For cycling, it is more-often better to go with a light lens.

We say this because of the safety issues that can come with having a pair of cycling sunglasses that are too dark. When riding we are usually surrounded with grey, in particular the ground, shadows, pot holes, and debris. Dark grey lenses may cause you to miss those obstacles, hindering your reaction time.

Lighter lenses (such as rose and copper) provide enhanced contrast, allowing you to spot uneven road surfaces up ahead. As a result, a lighter lens (with 100% UV protection) would be the way to go.

Yellow lenses filter out more of the blue wavelengths of light, allowing you to see contrast better.  This tint guarantees  you as the cyclist better vision with less light, in other words, in darker light conditions with less sunshine.

Black or Grey lenses are classic lenses and they are best for light and bright conditions. They will dim the sunlight and darken your vision, but do not enhance contrast or depth perception. The dark lens might be too dark for mountain biking because of the transitions through shadows

So lots to be mindful of, but it sure is fun getting kitted out in your new gear!