skip navigation

Origins of Modern Swimming Goggles

By Gary Hall Sr., The Race Club, 02/06/18, 12:00PM CST

Share

The challenges with those big rubber goggles were that they made swimmers see double, so the swimmer would have to close one eye to avoid confusion.

Prior to the late 1960’s almost no swimmer wore goggles in either practice or competition. Those that did use them wore the large, triangular shaped rubber goggles that we can often see in old photos of swimmers crossing the English Channel.

The challenges with those big rubber goggles were that they made swimmers see double, so the swimmer would have to close one eye to avoid confusion. They were also bulky, often leaked and caused more drag for the swimmer.

Swimmers from that era will recall the painful tears being shed after goggle-less practices from the toxicity of chlorine to the corneas.