Swimming Goggles Advice – By former swimming instructor Rebecca
Category: Swimming Kit

Swimming Goggles Advice – By former swimming instructor Rebecca

Swimming goggles for our adult swimming lessons

In my opinion swimming goggles are the single most important piece of equipment in swimming (swimming costume already included!) But the most frustrating. I could easily swim for hours if I wished but as soon as I get a drop of water into my eye, that’s it, game over. It spoils my whole swim, I suddenly stop concentrating on my technique and go as fast as I can to get to the other side to stop and fix them. However, as a competitive swimmer I have been trained to carry on no matter what happens to my goggles. So when I see people with ill-fitting goggles or goggles that instantly fill up with water, I empathise with them. I watch them struggle to see where they are going and their technique decline. I watch at the side whilst…..wait…..what….they turn around and do another swim! It’s almost like people accept this as part of the process and there is no solution.

Goggles should make swimming easier not harder!

Over the years I must have tried on dozens of goggles to find my perfect match. I always say “goggles are like headphones. There’s a pair for everyone, you’ve just got to find them”. It doesn’t matter if they are £3 or £30, if they work for you that’s great. (My current pair is 5 years old and cost £3.50). However, there are a number of things to consider when buying, fitting, wearing or maintaining goggles.

Clear of coloured swimming goggles?

Mirrored or dark coloured lenses are most suited to open water swimming as they reflect the sun so you are not blinded whilst swimming. Clear lenses are most suited to the pool or when the water is dark. If you have black goggles in a dark blue pool it’s going to be a lot harder to sense where you are going. I have a collection of around 6 pairs of goggles which I wear in different situations.

If you’re coming to one of our swimming lessons then I recommend clear goggles, as I can almost see how your swim is going by the expression on your face and how you look. If I can’t see your eyes I find it harder to know how you are feeling.

Are prescription goggles a help or a hindrance?

As someone that doesn’t wear glasses then I don’t know how much difference it makes. What I do know is that growing up I was always faster than my best friend. Not by much but enough. I used to think it was my fitness or technique that was just better (sorry Holly). That was until her mum invested in a pair of prescription goggles for her. Suddenly we were much closer in racing. When she finally beat me for the first time I was saddened but also pleased. Looking back she said it was almost a handicap and that wearing prescription goggles had improved her confidence drastically. So I’ll let you be the judge. Well worth a try though.

Adjustable goggles

Some goggles come with adjustable nose pieces and removable rubber seals. As a result I think these goggles are easily broken and the rubber seals tend to be lower in quality causing water to come in. This is what I like about the goggles we have at Turner swim. They are all comfy on your eyes and the sockets are cushioning. Click to view the most popular swimming goggles used in our lessons for males and females.

Placement of straps

Ideally the straps should sit on the crown of your head. Ladies, if you have a big bun or ponytail I recommend placing one strap above and one below. The goggle straps shouldn’t be on top of your ears or underneath the ears near your neck. Otherwise how are you supposed to hear and appreciate my jokes!

It’s important you get this right before entering the water as it will save time in the long run. Once the straps are in place, try and tighten them to be comfortably tight even if they give a slight mark on your eyes (that only lasts 5 minutes after the swim). This is better than being too loose and having sore eyes from water. Lastly, please ensure no hair or hat is underneath the eye sockets as this means the seal on your skin is not absolute so water will come in.


We’ve all done it. We get dressed in a rush or as soon as we get home we throw our things on the floor and collapse into bed. Swimming goggles are meant to last. I think the longest lasting pair I’ve ever had lasted 7 years. Goggles have a protective layer on both the outside and inside of the lens. If you drop them onto a hard floor (such as a swimming pool) or wear eye make-up this will ruin this protection. You will be left with scratches on the outside or blurry vision. Try and keep the goggles in the protective bag they usually come in to help keep them pristine. Take care of you goggles like they are a phone; don’t put them in your bag or pocket and sit on them and don’t keep them in the same compartment as keys or objects that could scratch them.

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