Safety should always be a high priority when it comes to riding a motorcycle. One of the basic necessities of being safe while riding is having full visual of the road ahead of you and being aware of what’s around you.
Not being able to see during such an activity can be extremely dangerous. A lot of people wonder if it’s okay to wear glasses while riding a motorcycle mostly because of it’s compatibility with wearing a helmet at the same time.
Can you ride a motorcycle with glasses? Whether it be sunglasses or prescription, you can ride a motorcycle with glasses and it is completely possible to do so comfortably even while wearing a helmet. Either type of glasses are considered safety features that will assist any motorcyclist with riding safely down the road.
Thousands of motorcyclists ride on the road daily while wearing glasses. A chunk of the world’s population requires them in order to see so there is no discrimination against those who need to wear them and want to enjoy a ride on their motorcycle. However, there are some things that need to be considered when riding with glasses.
Riding With Glasses
The concept of glasses have been around for a long time. People have used them for both protection and to enhance their sight. They’ve proven to be effective doing both things or else they wouldn’t have lasted near as long as they have.
Wearing glasses while riding a motorcycle can sometimes be a little tricky. If you don’t wear a helmet, keeping glasses on during a ride can sometimes be difficult. High speeds can easily swipe them off leaving your eyes either unprotected or almost blind.
Though I personally would never ride a motorcycle without a helmet, not every state requires riders to wear them. Not wearing a helmet makes riding with glasses a lot easier, but the high speeds can easily swipe them off your head.
If you choose to not wear a helmet and wear eye gear, whether they be sunglasses or prescription glasses, there are a few ways you can ensure they stay snug on your head.
First, make sure they’re not too loose in the first place. Loose glasses will obviously have a higher likelihood of falling off, so make adjustments as needed. I know Walmart vision centers are able to easily adjust glasses for people very quickly whether they’re made of plastic, metal, or any other material.
As unfashionable as they may seem, using glasses straps can be incredibly helpful while riding a motorcycle. There are some available that wrap around your head snugly (they’re called glasses retainers), so the chance of your glasses falling off during a ride are much more slim.
Now let’s cover if you need to wear glasses while wearing a helmet. It can be a bit awkward wearing a helmet and glasses at the same time, but it’s completely possible to do so if you do it the right way.
When putting on the helmet, take your glasses off first then place the helmet on your head and fasten it as needed. Adjust your helmet to how it fits comfortably then take your glasses and slowly slide them on in between the helmet and your head. A good fitting helmet should let you comfortably and snugly wear glasses unless you have extremely wide or large glasses.
If wearing your helmet and glasses at the same time is uncomfortable, you should reconsider altering one of the two. Your helmet may be too tight and it’s probably in your best interest to get a better fitting helmet that’ll suit your glasses. There are also plenty of motorcycle helmets out there made specifically for those who wear glasses. If you’re going to ride and wear glasses, this is an investment I recommend if your current combo is uncomfortable.
There is always the option of getting smaller glasses. This should be an easy adjustment if you’re simply wearing non-prescription sunglasses since they’re much less expensive than prescription.
Some Precautions To Take While Riding With Glasses
While riding a motorcycle with glasses on is completely possible, there are a few precautions that you should be aware of if you’re going to do this. If you’ve been wearing glasses for a while, you probably know some of the set-backs they give.
Be cautious wearing glasses that have thick hinges or temples (the handles that go around your ears). They may seem beneficial in any other circumstance because they block out light, but they do block some peripheral vision while riding which is something you should never go without during an activity like this.
Glasses are also susceptible to fogging up or getting dirt on them. This is especially dangerous while riding a motorcycle because you can’t simply remove the glasses if they’re prescription; you need them to see. That’s why it’s always advisable to wear a full face helmet that has a visor so you don’t have a chance of your lenses getting anything on them.
Fogged up glasses may happen no matter what kind of helmet you wear. Luckily there are plenty of products out there that you can put on your lenses that act as an anti-fog. Apply some anti-fog on your glasses (that can be found at pretty much any large store), an you won’t have to worry about a surprise temperature change riding down the road that could manifest itself by fogging up those spectacles.
And let’s not forget their susceptibility to becoming crooked or plainly slipping off. But if you take the right measures to securely fasten your lenses to your head (as demonstrated in the section above), you shouldn’t have to worry about this happening. Make sure to always check that they’re nice and snug before heading out on your ride.
What To Do When Vision Is Impaired
Sometimes there’s no way around it. You hit a pot hole, your nose gets sweaty, or the wind picks up and your glasses are no longer in front of your eyes. This doesn’t happen often to those who properly prepare themselves, but in the case it does it’s good to know how to handle a situation like that.
If you’re out for a ride and your prescription glasses somehow fall off or your sunglasses fall off and the sun is just too bright to see, you’re considered temporarily visually impaired.
If this happens while you’re out riding, immediately let off the throttle, but don’t slam on your brakes. If possible, attempt to adjust your glasses with one hand. This can sometimes be difficult if you’re wearing a full face helmet and gloves at the same time.
If there’s no chance of you being able to fix it with one free hand, you’ll need to attempt to pull over if possible. Pulling over is much safer than continuing with your ride down a road that you can’t even see. Turn on your hazard lights and try to pull over to the closest shoulder. Once you feel you are stopped in a safe spot, you put your feet down and adjust your glasses as needed.
Alternatives To Glasses
Perhaps you may be considering some alternatives to wearing glasses while riding your motorcycle. Luckily for you, there are a few alternatives out there that may suit your needs.
I could mention using contacts, but that’s a pretty obvious suggestion and likely something you’ve already considered. My next suggestion would be to invest in some prescription goggles.
Believe it or not, you can purchase a pair of riding goggles made specific to your prescription if you have one. You can put them on when you start your ride and replace them with your glasses when the ride is over. They come in clear or tinted. You can get these at any place that sells regular prescription glasses. Just talk to your eye doctor about your options.
If wearing prescription lenses isn’t your thing and you only need blockage from the sun, you have the option of purchasing a motorcycle helmet with interchangeable visors. If you don’t have one already, a lot of full face helmets will have the option of changing out the visor for either a clear one or a tinted one that works just as well as sunglasses, if not better.
Is it bad to leave a motorcycle in the sun? It is okay to occasionally leave a motorcycle out in the sun. If your bike is left sitting out in the sun for long periods of time on a regular basis, the UV rays from the sun can start damaging some of the cosmetics as well as impact the fuel. See my other article here for more information.