Tennis Industry magazine


Tennis Vision: Dark Matter

The newest sunglasses offer both protection for your eyes and stylish looks.

By Chris Nicholson

Sunglasses are worn to the court and club for many reasons, from enhancing vision during play to simply wanting to be stylish. No matter the reason, most players who pick up a racquet will at some point don a pair of shades.

Advances in sunglasses technology continue to forge ahead. This season’s models feature some of the lightest sunglasses ever available, lenses that polarize light and block UV rays, and eye-boggling technology that renders the world as clear and vivid as a 4K TV.

The sunglasses models here, from some of the top brands in the niche, reflect all of these innovations and more, allowing your customers to be some of the best-seeing and best-looking tennis players — on court and off. (Prices are suggested retail.)

Under Armour • UA Octane

Under Armour brings an arsenal of patented technology to its eyewear, including ArmourSight, which allows the player to see distortion-free from one edge of the frame to the other, and strong ArmourFusion frames reinforced with injected polymide. Self-articulating temples and multipositionable nose pads on the Octane ($115) provide a comfortable custom fit.

Costa • Playa

Costa’s 580 lens technology in the Playa frames ($169) will fix the colors of the world, reducing harmful wavelengths and boosting good ones — both protecting the eyes and making any court look better. The lenses are also polarized and scratch-resistant.

Bolle • Bolt S

Looking electric, the Bolt S sunglasses ($170) are armed with B-Clear technology, Bolle’s Trivex material that is lighter, more shatter resistant and has greater optical clarity than polycarbonate lenses. Holding those together are the B-Thin frames, which allow Bolle to customize for prescriptions.

Oakley • EVZero Path

The EVZero Path ($170) is Oakley’s lightest frame and its best for tennis, providing a rimless design of Plutonite lenses with an unobstructed wraparound view. Moreover, the house-technology earsocks and nose pads improve their grip when they encounter perspiration.

Maui Jim • Ho’okipa

Strut the club in style with Maui Jim’s Ho’okipa ($189). The lenses’ PolarizedPlus2 technology will not only protect eyes from glare and UV, but will also enhance details and color. The thin glass and minimalist frames combine to form one of the more lightweight sunglasses in the sportswear market.

Native Eyewear • Distiller

Native’s N3 technology in the Distiller ($109) works overtime to protect pupils, blocking four times more infrared light than standard polarized lenses, while also selectively filtering blue and UV light to create a crisp image. The frames give full visual coverage and are impact resistant.

Nike • Show X2

Designed to be adjustable to different fits and comfort levels, Nike’s Show sunglasses ($166) also offer other features attractive to tennis players: reduced fogging, cam-action hinges, adjustable temple wraps and interchangeable lenses to match different light conditions.

Rudy Project • Rydon with Tennis 100 lenses

Rydon ($249) utilizes a carbonium frame to create one of the lightest pair of court-worthy sunglasses available. Moreover, the Tennis 100 lenses have a specially designed green tint that makes it easier to visually track a yellow tennis ball.

Smith • PivLock Arena

The Arena frames ($189) are ergonomic to fit the face for stability during extreme activity — such as running around a hot rectangle for a few hours chasing and hitting a ball. Arena also features Smith’s ChromaPop lenses, which boost clarity.

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About the Author

Chris Nicholson is a contributing editor of Tennis Industry magazine.



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