I wear sunglasses every time I play golf. I have to.
In 2006, ironically on the golf course, I got a terrible eye infection — which I won’t get into, but you can ask me about on Twitter — that ultimately left my left eye especially sensitive to sunlight. Sunglasses let me play without squinting throughout the round.
However, over the years, I’ve come to only play golf wearing sunglasses with lenses that help make the golf setting pop. I see the ball better, get putts online more often and feel I have an easier time picking out more precise spots for shorter shots.
That’s why I was excited when I learned about Under Armour’s 2016 line of sunglasses at the PGA Merchandise Show. Their Game Day lens works to pick up moving objects better, delivering more contrast, particularly with golf’s color palette. This lens wasn’t in another pair of UA sunglasses I had from a few years ago, and they’re great for the beach or a sporting event, but not the best for golf. The Game Day lens is, well, a game changer for wearing UA sunglasses on the course. The golf course looks visually appealing with the lenses, and that means they’ll benefit my game, even if subtly.
I decided to give a test run to the Big Shot frame, which has a larger lens — important to keep as much sunlight out of my eyes as possible. The frame is also very light, so the glasses don’t feel like they weigh me down. The adjustable nose pad and the UA Autogrip feature, with co-molded rubber and auto-adjusting parts around the temples, gives me the secure, close-to-face fit I like without feeling like the frame is squeezing my face. While my sunglass tan is unavoidable, the sunglass indent is with this frame.
The Big Shot, one of four golf models for 2016, starts at $90, which is a good price point for the performance aspect. Anything under $100 is. Depending on the frame and if you want a polarized lens, the price could go up to around $160. Still, not bad.
If you’re like me and feel sunglasses are absolutely essential to your success on the golf course, then this is a good investment in your game. You’ll look good, potentially perform better (especially with suboptimal eyesight) and, with the variety of options available, you can wear them on and off the course.