The good news is that risk of serious eye injury in squash is low, but if you play regularly there is an estimated one in every four chance of receiving an eye injury.
Even high-level players who ‘keep their eye on the ball’ are not exempt, as the former US No. 1 Will Carlin discovered when his retina was torn by a ball impacting his eye and resulting in two operations and permanent impairment of vision. Carlin ordinarily wore protection but had left his goggles in another bag on that unfortunate occasion.
In the UK alone an estimated 15,000 eye injuries occur each year during squash games, so if you don’t want to be such a statistic you can protect your eyes with a small but worthwhile investment.
Eye protection is an issue the World Squash Federation (WSF) began addressing formally on 1 January 1999 when it first became compulsory for junior players (19 and under) to wear eye protection while playing. The thinking was that it would engender good habits with the younger players and so establish a healthy habit for life. Today doubles players also have to wear eye protection during games and it’s rare to see any serious player whatever age or level without eye protection.
The WSF is working hard to encourage greater uptake of eye protection and many court operators also insist they are worn at least by juniors, if not by all players. Contact and spectacle wearers can invest in a pair that corrects their vision as well as protecting their eyes, and there is a growing list of manufacturers that meet the WSF’s safety and performance standards. National standards also apply and in the UK the British Standard is BS7930.1.
Here at Sweatband.com, we want you to enjoy your game and feel duty-bound to recommend eye protection for all players. We always endeavour to bring you the best products at the lowest prices and feel it will probably the most sensible squash investment you make.