Mountain Bike Vision Skills and Eyewear

By Dr. Ryan W. Nelson   

Dr. Ryan W. Nelson

Good visual skills are essential for both the competition and recreational mountain biker.  The best advice I can give you is to keep your head up and cast your eyes farther down the trail.  When you stop looking at the ground and start looking at the trail, it does a number of things that will help you build speed and gain confidence when riding.   

1. Looking farther down the trail gives you more time to react to the terrain.  

2. A level head position allows the internal balancing system (located in the inner ear) to work most effectively.   

3. Imagine a line on the trail that you want your bike’s wheels to follow and concentrate on it.  Your bike will follow your eyes.  

4. Avoid looking at the trail hazards, again because your bike will follow your eyes.   

Sugar Bottom Mountain Bike Trail, located  in eastern Iowa, is one of my favorite places to ride.  Sugar Bottom has trails with variety of terrain conditions for all ability levels.  Having the proper equipment can enhance performance and the enjoyment of riding. Regardless of whether you mountain bike several times a week or several times a year, remember to always wear eye protection when you ride.   

Iowa EyeCare is the leader in recreational frames and lenses for the state of Iowa.  We have both prescription and non-prescription options available and we would be happy to assist you regardless of your budget.   

Mountain Biking presents multiple hazards to the eye, including low-hanging tree limbs, loose dirt, bugs, wind, and bright sunlight.  When selecting eye protection keep these tips in mind: 

  • Use only Polycarbonate or other, shatter-resistant lenses.

    A Specialized Rockhopper, just like my own bike.

  • Frames should fit comfortably and snugly on the face.
  • Use a neck strap to prevent lost eyewear over rough terrain.
  • Use lenses that have UV protection.
  • Use yellow tinted lenses for riding during low-light conditions.
  • Use amber or rose tinted lenses for general riding conditions.

Don’t forget the other basic necessities either:   

  • Always wear a helmet.
  • Obey the posted trail rules and regulations.
  • Carry a portable bike emergency repair kit.
  • Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water.

The eye doctors and staff at Iowa EyeCare are experts at fitting eye protection for all outdoor activities.  Schedule an appointment today by calling 319-377-2222 or by clicking on the link: CEDAR RAPIDS EYE DOCTORS.

Tags: , , ,

One Response to “Mountain Bike Vision Skills and Eyewear”

  1. lisacolumbus says:

    I am an avid outdoorswoman and have always wanted to try mountain biking. Thanks for the tips! I will keep them in mind when I finally get around to trying it:) Can you recommend any good places for beginners?

Leave a Reply