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The Perfect Open Water Swim Goggles

Updated: Jun 6

With so many queries from trainees personally, and other swimmers about "How to choose OWS goggles"... on various WhatsApp groups, I am noting down my views about the same…
The pair of goggles that FIT you the best, are the BEST!

Unfortunately, the suitability and compatibility of a goggle may NOT have any correlation with the brand or the price of the goggle!

Choosing a goggle is such an individual thing. One should always buy Swimming goggles that fit perfectly on that particular individual, and not because they work for someone you know or look good on someone else! Especially when swimming in OW.
The kind of seal, the field of vision, the kind of lenses (plain, tinted, polarised, mirrored, etc) and all such factors are dependent on the purpose and frequency of usage, and also (mostly) a personal preference. Some elites would swear by Swedish goggles, others can barely tolerate the idea of such a bare-bone goggle! Some need a mask... For some, it is too large.
Generally low profile ones are used for pool racing, but there might be a slight compromise on the comfort and seal sometimes. These especially compromise in the field of vision quality due to their shallow profile design, hence may not be suitable for OWS IMHO. Masks, on the other hand, are too large in my opinion, but some goggles like the "Arena Imax pro" or "Speedo Biofuse" give you the comfort and reliable seal (required especially when swimming in the sea) but, unlike masks have a relatively low profile.

I suggest one tries out various types, kinds, and models of different brands and see what suits you best.
The best test to check if the goggle suits your face contours is the “no strap seal test”, the goggles, if fitting correctly, are “sucked in” the eye socket slightly when pressed very lightly, and they stay put in place even without the straps when you nod around rather vigorously.

Here is a list of a few of the good, slightly “high-end” goggles, that other experts are swearing by in 2019 (and I agree to..), which you could look at are:

I used to find the ARENA IMAX PRO MIRRORED one of the best. But their build quality has drastically gone downhill off late, especially when ordered online here in India!

I used to use a NABAIJI B-FAST MIRRORED when I used to swim. The most incredible thing about this model (B-fast) is that it has a micro-adjustable nose bridge so that you can customize the fit exactly to your face to ensure zero leakage. And, it’s at less than half the price of all the goggles mentioned above!

One of my swimmers (sub 2hr:28min for a 10km swim and 1:05 for a 100 sprint) also uses the same model. So if anyone tells you that relatively cheaper goggles don’t work for intermediate and advanced swimmers... ask them to #@&^* !!!

Note: All of the above is a personal opinion… NONE of it is a paid partnership


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