Jiu Jitsu and Contact Lenses

So, I’ll just cut to the chase, while training last night I accidentally got kicked in the eye and it knocked my contact lens. Luckily I was able to catch it before it hit the floor, and we have contact solution in our first aid kit, but for anyone who wears contacts while training you what want to think about getting one if those small travel size bottles of multi-purpose solution. To be perfectly honest I’m not sure the active, disinfecting ingredient in the solution is strong enough to kill whatever is possibly on the floor, but hey, it’s better than nothing.

Just a tip from your friendly four-eyed Jiu jitsuka.

Some people have suggested rolling without glasses or contacts: my eyesight is bad enough that I am pretty sure that would lead to such a massive headache that I would just want to crawl into a hole and die, so at least personally that’s out. I just put up with it, and expect that there’s a good chance one will fall out (it’s usually the one for the right eye).

For other vision impaired Jiu jitsu players, what do you guys do? Just put up with the risk of your contacts falling out? Wear glasses to class and put them off to the side before training?

Let me know!

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15 Comments

Filed under bjj, Training

15 responses to “Jiu Jitsu and Contact Lenses

  1. My vision is pretty awful. I used to wear contacts whilst training, but now I just go without any visual aid. If I’m at a seminar or that, I’ll chuck glasses on to watch the technique, and then put them to the side whilst training.

    The reason for ditching contacts is because whilst grappling with a particularly skilled wrestler one day, as he moved from side to north/south this dragged my contact lens on to the side of my eyeball. It wasn’t the easiest to get out, and it’s an experience I do not want to repeat.

  2. Blergh ouch I never thought of that @ Lazy Grappler! I pop contacts in for training, wear glasses normally. They haven’t fallen out yet and I was wondering how easy it really is for them to do so. Thanks for the solution tip!

  3. Jaime

    I use contacts and haven’t had any issues.

  4. You could try special goggles intended for sport (e.g., like Edgar David, the Dutch footballer). Take a look here and here. 🙂

  5. I’m dead blind without my glasses/contacts on. I’m pretty sure I couldn’t find my partners lapel without them! – so no going without.

    I got contacts when I started judo, specifically because of that. No way I can be thwacking the mat either blind or in glasses. I HATE wearing contacts (they aren’t comfy), but I’ve never lost them in class.The worst that happens is they start drying out and I can hardly see… I keep eyedrops on the sidelines.

  6. PatStribs

    I wear disposible contact lenses for judo.
    They come in little sealed pods of solution so you can just have a dozen spares permanently in your bag without needing bottles of saline and cases etc.
    When one gets “brushed” out of your eye, you bin it, wash your hands and put in a fresh one.
    Back on the mat in no time.
    Except when it rolls up into the back of your eye somewhere…

  7. I forgot my contacts one night a few weeks ago (I don’t wear them to work b/c I stare at the computer screen and the contacts dry out, so I have to take them & put them in later). It was a massive change from normal, and I think I started to get a little motion sick by the end of the night since things weren’t in the focus my brain expected them to be.

    My contacts get dragged out sometimes; a few of my training partners absolutely love to drag their gi across your eyes. I try to anticipate those moments and to shut my eyes while it’s going on. That’s the best I’ve got. (Though I have always kept extra solution on me since I started wearing contacts years ago, so that’s covered.)

  8. I hate my contacts, but it’s really a psychological issue for me- when I’m blind, I feel very helpless and handicapped. Also, in striking and during standup, I like to see my opponent’s expression and where hir eyeballs are focusing.

    I put them in in the car just before going into the school, and take them out in the car as soon as class is over. I’ve had one rubbed to the side a couple of times during class, but haven’t lost one on the mat yet. There have been a few occasions where I have to leave the mat to take one out, clean it and re-insert because it was irritating. There have also been a few times where I had to go without because one eye was just irritated and I either had to take the contacts out or didn’t want to put them in in the first place. In those cases, I have to use my glasses for the demos and then get rid of them to work. It is super-annoying, because the glasses won’t fit on my face with my headgear and cap- so I have to just sort of hold them up in front of my eyes and squint through them.

  9. During the day I normally wear glasses and then just have contacts for jitsu. Far too blind not to have some kind of eye correction. Though long run I should probably get lasered. I’ve only had one issue where my contact popped out, I caught it and popped it straight back in. I’ve seen others in class just not wear any eye correction ( can’t be that blind ) or wear glasses to watch the instructional parts then run to the side to take them off for rolling / drilling ( seems a pain in the ass to me )

  10. First, I’m sorry my toe ripped out your contact lense last night. Second, I just pop them right back in. I do not doubt one day my infected eyeball will just roll right out of my head.

    • Katie

      Haha, no worries, not the first time it’s fallen out, which is also why I realized when I get older I’m going to be the cool relative with the glass eyeball- because my infected eye will be falling out shortly after yours does.

  11. This probably wouldn’t help as much, while your still searching for the perfect solution/ workaround… Try rolling with your eyes closed. I also wear glasses but luckily I can play any sport without them. Similar to you I get headaches if I don’t wear my glasses for a significant amount of time. What I do from time to time is to rest my eyes while sparring or drilling, it also helps me heighten my “feel of the game” and the rest of my senses.

  12. Mike

    I roll with contacts in all the time. It’s been kicked out of my eyes many times during my opponents flail their legs in an arm bar or triangle attempt. At least I have an excuse when my contact pops out of my eye when I am subbed. 🙂

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