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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    Denver
    Posts
    232

    What do surfers with *bad* vision do?

    I am blind as a bat without glasses or contacts. I am moving from the mountains to Puerto Rico and will be trading in the fatboards and learning how to surf. If this question is stupid, please refer to my surfing JONG thread.

    http://tetongravity.com/forums/showthread.php?t=66002

    What are the options for surfers with super-bad eyesight? Contact seem like they would wash out and it seems like prescription sunglasses would get ripped off by the surf.

    I know that the obvious answer is LASIK, but what some other ones?
    "The beacon says you're a douche."

    -My friend Nick during a little transceiver practice

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Posts
    8,931
    contacts. close your eyes.

    If you can't see the waves coming you can't surf.
    Elvis has left the building

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Location
    Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere
    Posts
    6,595
    Contacts. Close your eyes. If you can't see the waves coming you can't surf.
    Putting the "core" in corporate, one turn at a time.

    Metalmücil 2010 - 2013 "Go Home" album is now a free download

    The Bonin Petrels

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Denver, CO
    Posts
    6,898
    Contacts.

    I've been wearing them in the water for the last 10 or so years with only 1 instance resulting in a lost lens which occurred during a lifeguard test involving a timed 1-mile swim.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Location
    Central Mass.
    Posts
    1,185
    i have surfed with contacts for years also.
    i have lost one, when i was actually up on a wave and a drop of water flew up directly into my eye and popped my lens out...like slo-mo, i actually saw it coming.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Location
    Oh are.
    Posts
    4,219
    Contacts. Close your eyes. If you can't see the waves coming you can't surf.

    I surfed 5 days a week in SoCal for 6 months and only ever lost one...after getting owned by a wave. You'll be fine. You can actually open your eyes underwater with contacts on if you are careful, although I don't recommend in salt water.
    ROBOTS ARE EATING MY FACE.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Bellingham, WA
    Posts
    4,349
    I've worn contacts while professionally whitewater rafting and kayaking for the last 7 or 8 years. I've only lost one or two during that time, and if getting maytagged in a hole doesn't rip them out all the time, you'll be fine surfing. Stop being a pussy and just do it.
    OOOOOOOHHHH, I'm the Juggernaut, bitch!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Location
    Switzerland
    Posts
    7,185
    fyi - there are prescription glasses made for surfing. they float and strap on like goggles. a friend of mine uses them.

    me, i just do without. i'm the one who always manages to lose a contact somehow.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Location
    Vacationland
    Posts
    1,027
    Contacts. Have lost only a handful over the years. Close your eyes when you're getting maytagged, but I can usually swim underwater with my eyes open even with contacts in.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    5,403

    back up plan

    Laser surgery.I'm still hoping to get corrective surgery after years of beating up my eyes with contacts.
    FYI, salt water is "thicker" than fresh water and less likely to lose a lens in the water.
    Bring a spare pair of contacts surfing (or your glasses) in case you lose one (or both). I've driven 2-3 hours home with one lens, not fun in the dark. Surfing with one lens, pretty tough,less depth perception.
    Look into kitesurfing , too.
    No wind= great surfing
    Big wind=blown out surf but kitesurfing crappy waves=priceless
    Bacon tastes good. Pork chops taste goood.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jul 2002
    Location
    Suckramento
    Posts
    19,223
    Just surf at night, then it won't make a difference.
    Quando paramucho mi amore de felice carathon.
    Mundo paparazzi mi amore cicce verdi parasol.
    Questo abrigado tantamucho que canite carousel.


  12. #12
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    North Vancouver/Whistler
    Posts
    11,293
    Contacts. Only had problems in freshwater surf - when WW kayaking. In salt water - no problems

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    Location
    Deep Playa
    Posts
    4,798
    Contacts. (Focus 1-day disposables)

    I tend to lose one per session if it's barreling. When you rip as hard as I do and get slotted in pits as deep as I can then you're probably gonna lose a contact if you get spat out or the thing shuts down on you. The only way to make it out of deep barrels is to keep your eye on the exit.

    ...and practice putting contacts on without a mirror, so when you do lose one you can just pull one out of your trunks/wettie and stick it back in your eye.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jul 2002
    Location
    Suckramento
    Posts
    19,223
    Quote Originally Posted by Superstar Punani View Post
    Contacts. (Focus 1-day disposables)

    I tend to lose one per session if it's barreling. When you rip as hard as I do and get slotted in pits as deep as I can...
    Whoa...that is muy core. Punani is not just da hui, he's Leroy Fucking Jenkins!
    Quando paramucho mi amore de felice carathon.
    Mundo paparazzi mi amore cicce verdi parasol.
    Questo abrigado tantamucho que canite carousel.


  15. #15
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    Lyon
    Posts
    2,104
    Contacts. Lost a couple in the past, and always was too dumb to have my glasses in the car (or extra contacts) as a back-up, so the one-eyed driving was fun, luckily it was a short drive from the breaks I used to surf...I'm pretty damn blind without so taking the other one out isn't an option.

    I can put contacts in without a mirror no problem (very useful backpacking as well), but I never thought of carrying extra contacts while surfing...can't believe Punani actually said something worthwhile!

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Girdwood AK
    Posts
    74
    use the force, drop in on people ,get pummeled. Sit on your board with shades and move your head around like Stevie Wonder, ask someone to tell you when to paddle, you'll get pity waves.
    All the other options have been mentioned.

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Posts
    8,931
    Quote Originally Posted by TBski View Post
    drop in on people
    the next fat old fuck who drops in on me riding a longboard and summarily wipes out (no, it's not intentional, that's what they did everytime) is getting a beating
    Elvis has left the building

  18. #18
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    Denver
    Posts
    232
    Thanks for the input. Looks like I'll stick with the contacts while I learn.

    All of you are hilarious.
    "The beacon says you're a douche."

    -My friend Nick during a little transceiver practice

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    5,403

    sea specs

    these polarized glasses are great. They'll even make them with corrective lenses. I saw Gerry Lopez in a video years ago talking about wearing polarized shades surfing due to high UV rays down in G Land.
    I wear these kitesurfing cuz there's alays alot of water spraying and haven't lost a contact lens since I got them. Just tie them off to a wetsuit leash or I'll wear a lanyard around my neck if no wetsuit.
    If you get 2 buddys to go in, it's 3 for 2 or $40 a pair instead of $60.
    Haven't tried them on the snow yet.They Rock !
    http://www.seaspecs.com/html/Gallery.html#
    Bacon tastes good. Pork chops taste goood.

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Cyburbia & Tahoe, CA
    Posts
    4,450
    Another contact user here. I dont' surf much, but do kitesurf. Once I got a grain of sand under a contact while getting maytaged. I never realized a small scratch could hurt so bad for so long. Apparently I got the sand out pretty quickly, but it sure didn't feel that way to me. The worst part was that I was at a beach about an hour from the hospital. I had to drive with one eye closed, in pain all the way. The put in some sort of antisthetic eye drop and it was instantly better. It healed up pretty quickly.

    I also have those glasses that strap on. Mine aren't prescription. For what the prescription ones cost, I'm not sure I'd be happy when they got washed away. Maybe tie them to your wetsuit zipper pull-tab?

  21. #21
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    5,403
    what he said, you HAVE to tie them off or you WILL lose them. One good crash...gone. I've seen people slam hard enuf to pop out a sea spec lens, they're replaceable ($$).Still kitesurfing RS ??You get nice racoon (goggle tan) eyes wearing the specs alot.

    There once was an oyster
    Whose story I tell,
    Who found that some sand
    Had got into his shell.

    It was only a grain,
    but it gave him great pain.
    For oysters have feelings
    Although they’re so plain.

    Now, did he berate
    the harsh workings of fate
    That had brought him
    To such a deplorable state?

    Did he curse at the government,
    Cry for election,
    And claim that the sea should
    Have given him protection?

    ‘No,’ he said to himself
    As he lay on a shell,
    Since I cannot remove it,
    I shall try to improve it.

    Now the years have rolled around,
    As the years always do,
    And he came to his ultimate
    Destiny stew.

    And the small grain of sand,
    That had bothered him so
    Was a beautiful pearl
    All richly aglow.

    Now the tale has a moral,
    for isn’t it grand
    What an oyster can do
    With a morsel of sand?

    What couldn’t we do
    If we’d only begin
    With some of the things
    That get under our skin.
    Bacon tastes good. Pork chops taste goood.

  22. #22
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Girdwood AK
    Posts
    74
    [QUOTE=TBski;1038281] drop in on people ,get pummeled.

    yes, as written above, although maybe if he dropped in on you with a white cane trying to determine if he should go left or right he should only get a moderate beating.

  23. #23
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Cyburbia & Tahoe, CA
    Posts
    4,450
    Nope, not kiting any more. Boarding is my only real risky adrenaline sport left. Still gotta sell the motorcycles though.

  24. #24
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    938
    Quote Originally Posted by bossass View Post
    You can actually open your eyes underwater with contacts on if you are careful, although I don't recommend in salt water.
    Why dont you recommend it in salt water?

  25. #25
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Posts
    578
    For years, I wore gas permeable lenses and never had any problems in salt or fresh water. Now, I wear soft lenses. They're fine in saltwater, but swell up and get blurry in freshwater. I've considered going back to gas perms or getting lasix because I hate not being able to see when I'm trying to negotiate a rapid on a river.
    Keep it off my wave...Soundgarden

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