14 Eye Protection Tips For Mountain Bike Riding To Ensure A Safe Ride

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Are you a mountain biker? Then you must be having an exciting life.

I believe, mountain biking like no other sport, can break the monotony of life. But it is one of the most challenging forms of biking till now.

Mountain biking can cause severe injuries hence mountain bikers must do everything to stay safe.

Most riders usually forget about protective eye gear as they get ready for a ride with their helmets and well-adjusted mountain bike.

Similar to the other riding equipment, proper precautions must be taken to keep the eyes safe and protected from dirt, harmful sunlight, and other obstacles during the journey.

Mountain bikers should follow eye protection tips for mountain bike riding even if they are well-skilled bikers or know the trail well.

So all experienced mountain biking riders and novices must follow the below-mentioned tips for protecting their eyes during mountain biking.

Here Are 14 Eye Protection Tips For Mountain Bike Riding

1. Secure a windshield to your bike:

Including a windshield in your bike that is well will be directing airflow, so it does not directly land in the face.

It will also be deflecting some hard particles that inevitably fly your ways, such as small rocks, debris, or bugs.

Ensure that the windshield is constructed properly from shatterproof material and securely mounted to the front frame.

2. Put on a complete face-covering helmet:

It is an excellent setup to protect your head. It will also keep your eyes protected from dust and repel rocks or bugs properly.

Many people do not like to wear it as they do not find it appealing. But a complete face-covering helmet is made of robust material and available in different colors.

3. Wear a helmet eye shield:

It will offer the necessary protection from air and road debris like gravels, insects, and so on.

The best type will be a helmet face shield that will completely seal the helmet’s front. It will be protecting the entire face from the water and fine particles without obstructing your vision.

Wear your full face covering helmet that comes with a flip-up and integrated shield. Keep its shield closed while riding the bike.

You can also buy half or three-fourths of helmets with shields and proper eye protection. Select a clear or tinted face shield based on where or when you opt for mountain bike riding.

If you choose a tinted one, ensure you carry one clear shield if the weather is cloudy or you ride after dark.

Also, learn how to swap shields on the helmet as it will be a tool-free mode of operation.

4. Select right eyeglasses:

They will be protecting your eyes against specific hazards like impact, droplet, splash, optical radiation, dust, and many more.

When you buy eyeglasses, check out if they meet all ANSI standards.

Eyeglasses that include UV protection will help shield your eyes from any harmful radiation and also aid in lowering sun glare when you drive in the daylight.

While driving during the night, ensure you keep a separate pair that is non-tinted with an anti-glare lens designed particularly for driving at night.

To ensure that the eyeglasses stay secured on the face, make use of a sports strap that will prevent them from flying off if you stop or turn suddenly.

5. Get the perfect pair of contact lenses:

Once you make up your mind to use contacts get recommendations from your doctor for the type or brand, you must use. Ask about single-use contact lenses or soft lenses.

While mountain biking, your contact lenses will be getting very dirty. You can use and then discard single-use lenses easily.

You will quickly get used to a soft lens, and you will forget that you are wearing one while biking.

6. Switch to prescription lenses:

One of the best benefits of these lenses is that you will not have contacts to dry out when you ride.

If dirt enters your eyes, you can blink out the dirt quickly than if it is stuck under your contact lens.

If you wish to try prescription lenses, then ensure that you select some different colors and styles so that you can use them in every condition.

7. Try out some goggles:

If you wear proper goggles, then they will offer additional protection because they will be adequately secured to your head along with a band. Thus they would not come off quickly during sudden stops or movements.

They will fit nicely against your face for providing excellent protection against dust particles that some regular eyeglasses will never block.

The seal that will be created among your cheeks and goggles will be preventing air from hitting the eyes and assist in reducing all risk when you ride among the mountains.

If you are using any half-helmet, then wearing goggles will be providing extra wind protection around the eyes.

They will also work perfectly behind your full-face shield if you have shatterproof polycarbonate lenses.

You can use a clear shield and then switch between regular glasses and sunglasses for eye protection and correction of vision.

8. Consult an optician:

If you wish to make sure that you are buying the right pair of goggles when biking, consult your optician. He will let you know if the pairs come with proper UV filtering.

It is necessary to keep your eyes well protected during mountain biking.

9. Use photochromic lenses for mountain biking:

It is the most updated way of protecting your eyes.

Like transition lenses for prescription eyeglasses, this will react to changing light conditions while you are riding, lightening in dark or shade, and darkening in the bright sunlight.

These shields are worth the price you get them in the market.

10. Prevent fogging in glasses:

The initial step of preventing fogging in glasses is by buying those pairs that sit a little far away from your face and has ventilation holes near the sides or top.

If you find it challenging to manage foggy glasses, use sprays or anti-fog wipes.

While mountain bike riding, if you require a fast fix, rub little saliva on your lens to keep away the fog.

11. Check out polarized glasses:

Polarized glasses will help in reducing glare. They work and block any horizontal lights, causing glare in glass, snow, water, or highway lines.

Polarized glasses will cut any glare due to reflection. They will be great when you bike when it is snowing or raining.

12. Let your eyes rest:

This is very important while you are mountain biking.

Stop your bike and take frequent breaks during sunny or windy conditions. Then rest your eyes for at least 10 minutes during the journey.

13. Keep the glasses clean:

The pair of glasses used for MTB riding will become dirty. So it would help if you cleaned them properly.

Buy cleaning kits for glasses or use a tiny drop of dish soap on the lenses.

If you do not require to wash the glasses, you can wipe them; ensure you use an MTB glass specific cloth as standard towel or paper clothes will be causing a small scratch on your lenses.

14. Store the glasses properly while mountain riding:

Even after doing all right, you will require putting off your glasses while mountain riding. The perfect place for storing them is in your helmet’s front notches.

If you think they are not secure enough, place the glasses in the backpack.

Do not put them in your pocket as it is not an imperfect option as you will not be able to access them quickly, and in case you crash on then you may be crushing the glasses in a way that they cannot be repaired.

FAQs About Eye Protection While Mountain Biking

1. Should you give importance to eye protection?

Never ride without proper eye protection. If you protect your eyes while mountain bike riding, it means you are preventing them from possible injuries.

If you have clouded vision by any minor irritants like dust, small insects, etc., it will be causing you to lose all control of the bike. If you close your eyes for even a second, it may cause a severe bike crash.

Proper eye protection will protect your vision and help prevent loss of bike control while you are riding.

Wear some sort of eye protection to prevent yourself from becoming a hazard to anyone if some eye irritant makes you lose bike control.

2. Why should I protect my eyes while mountain biking?

As your eyes are considered one of the most delicate body organs, care must be accordingly taken to ensure nothing goes wrong during your ride.

Even if some dust enters your eyes during any turn, it may cause a fatal crash. Hence it is imperative that you protect your eyes from all possible damages by wearing riding glasses.

3. Why do you need MTB glasses?

You will need MTB glasses to protect your eyes from dust and debris and to get hold of sharp and clear vision.

People who take part in mountain biking are aware of the pain or irritation associated with something entering the eye while on the trail.

If harsh materials come in contact with the eyeball, you will have itchy and watery eyes that will irritate you in your journey.

Mountain biking glasses will protect your eyes from dust, debris, dirt, leaves, flying rocks, and anything that may get in the way during mountain biking.

If you wish to see better on your upcoming ride, but somehow you are not aware of doing so, a great pair of MTB glasses is the best solution for you.

4. How can I find the right MTB glasses?

The most thoughtful way to protect your eyes while mountain biking is using MTB glasses.

Before finding the best pair of glasses, follow three tips I share below that will help you find them.

  • Select lenses that you can switch out.
  • Buy biking glasses that offer both security and comfort.
  • Try out the most technologically updated one

Look out for a pair of MTB glasses that include interchangeable lenses. If you buy such a glass, you will use a wide variety of particular lenses at the same price that you will be paying at once.

You can do this if you pop out the lenses and snap them into the right place as you want, based on the particular reason you require them for during your mountain biking trip.

Search for the most updated technology, such as Roll-Off MTB glasses. It will be excellent for muddy and wet paths as anything that will come in contact with your glasses’ surface will be smoothly sliding off.

If you use regular glasses, then mud or dirt may be sticking to the outer part of the lens and will cause a problem when you need to step down and clean it.

The most important part is to search for security and comfort in your MTB glasses.

Irrespective of the advanced features your glasses may be offering, the most critical factor is how the drinks will be protecting your eyes and how easily you can use them.

5. Should I use MTB glasses?

Yes, MTB glasses can be advantageous for many reasons when on a mountain biking adventure. Be it comfort or safety; it is a must to wear MTB glasses.

These glasses will serve the purpose of securely covering your eyes from all flying debris and offer protection from UV rays and better vision in certain circumstances.

However, if you should be wearing MTB glasses or not will be depending on your personal choice and situation.

Generally, MTB glasses will be much safer and offer more protection than average sunglasses.

That Will Be All

Many people are unaware that there are few factors in bike riding, especially mountain biking, that can cause harm to the eyes.

There are also harmful ways of hurting your eyes when mountain bike riding without knowing it. Do not be over-confident as you will get into trouble and become situation can be life-threatening.

Following all safety measures and the above-mentioned eye protection tips for mountain bike riding will let you have comfortable, secure, and enjoyable mountain bike riding.

Protect your eyes and ride on safely.

P.S. Do check similar deep-dives I have done on polarized glasses and pit viper glasses and photochromic glasses which are widely used for mountain biking.

You might also want to check out ways to prevent your mtb glasses from fogging, which is a common problem when you ride.


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Rohan runs Biking KnowHow along with his team. Rohan has been a mountain biker since 2005. His mission is to simplify mountain biking for everyone. All Biking KnowHow content piece is thoroughly fact-checked. Our content is backed up with leading research and inputs from expert cyclists.