If you were to ask a handful of athletes to name the body part that is most important to their sport, chances are you would receive a different answer from each, depending on their sport or position.
For instance, baseball or softball players might say their throwing arms, while soccer players would probably point out that they couldn’t dribble, pass, or do flying bicycle kicks without their legs.
As important as the arms, legs, hands, and feet are sport-specific movements, one body system trumps them all.
Without good eyesight or the ability to shift focus and set split-second reactions into motion, football players couldn’t catch back-shoulder fades, and basketball players wouldn’t be able to hit pull-up three pointers.
And yet, despite how obviously important an athlete’s eyes are to his or her performance, only about 21% of adults wear protective eyewear while playing sports. And while helmets and shoulder pads and shin guards are all common sports attire, only 46% of parents make their children wear eye protection, too.
The lack of emphasis on eye protection in sports leads to more than 600,000 sports-related eye injuries a year, 90% of which could be prevented with appropriate eyewear.
So whether you’re a soccer mom or member of the USWNT , it’s time to start protecting your game face.
And if you need more convincing, just check out this infographic brought to you by the American Optometric Association that illustrates the importance of eye protection.