Sports Eye Safety Guide

Hindsight doesn’t work if you lose your sight. Wear eye protection, and keep your sight for life.

Approximately 40,000 sports eye injuries occur in the United States each year. Many result in permanent vision loss.

All athletes should wear protective eyewear, but not just any eyewear. Use protection specifically designed for the sport, and look for these labels to indicate the product has been properly tested and approved by the appropriate certifying organization.*

Today’s athlete has a number of eye protectors available. And the best part is that protective eyewear does not hinder performance in any way. When properly fitted, appropriate eye protection can reduce the risk of eye injuries by 90%. Ask your Eye M.D. to help you select the eyewear you need to play hard and play safe.

* Required standards for eye protectors are established by the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM Standard F803 for racquet sports, baseball fielders, basketball, women’s lacrosse). Certification is neither required nor available for every sport, however it provides an additional safeguard for athletes.

American Academy of Ophthalmology
P.O. Box 7424
San Francisco, CA

94120-7424415.561.8500 Tel.
415.561.8555 Fax

Baseball Polycarbonate or wire face guard attached to helmet; sports goggles with polycarbonate lenses on the field PECC

Basketball Sports goggles with polycarbonate lenses PECC

Field Hockey Full face mask for the goalie; sports goggles with polycarbonate lenses/wire mesh goggles on the field PECC

Football Polycarbonate eye shield attached to helmet with wire face mask NOCSAE

Ice Hockey Helmet with full face protection CSA / HECC

Men’s Lacrosse Helmet with full face protection NOCSAE

Women’s Lacrosse Full face protection or sports goggles with polycarbonate lenses/wire mesh goggles PECC

Paintball Full face protection PECC

Racquet Sports Sports goggles with polycarbonate lenses CSA / PECC

Skiing High impact resistant eye protector PECC

For sports with no standard, eyewear certified for racquet sports suggested. There is no satisfactory eye protection for boxing.

CSA Canadian Standards Association
HECC Hockey Equipment Certification Council
NOCSAE National Operating Committee on Standards for Athletic Equipment
PECC Protective Eyewear Certification Council

Copyright © 2001 American Academy of Ophthalmology ® All rights reserved.