The 2014 Triathlete Buyer’s Guide magazine is out on newsstands now (and check out the digital version), and we’re giving you a sneak peek right here. Check out the goggles from the guide here and check back to Triathlete.com for more Buyer’s Guide content.
Blue Seventy Element
The draw: Affordable and versatile
Experienced swimmers who are used to a small gasket feel that provides low drag and great visibility will love this goggle. The nosepiece is fixed but its flexibility helps it match many faces. Fit against the face is free of pressure points. The orange lenses are ideal for indoor training and low-light races. You can’t go wrong for this well-priced yet versatile high performance goggle.
The draw: Firm and solid fit
If swimming with a low-profile goggle is a priority, the Lightning might just be the strongest choice. This traditional racing goggle has a strap system that adjusts easily and quickly so you can make any adjustments on the fly. With four interchangeable nosepieces, you’ll be able to tune these to the right fit. These no-nonsense goggles are suited for the more advanced swimmer who is comfortable with a narrower field of vision and firm seal.
Speedo MDR 2.4 Mirrored Goggle
The draw: Comfortable gaskets and clear vision
While most goggles have curved lenses, the MDR 2.4 has a unique split lens design, which provides zero distortion and is ideal for open-water sighting. It is quite possibly one of the most comfortable goggles we’ve ever strapped on. Maybe it’s the innovative eye gasket design with stretchy grooves that expand and move with your face that makes this set stand out. Not only do the comfy grooves reduce the pressure around your eyes, they also leave no trace after a swim—raccoon eyes no more.
The draw: Race-ready fit, lens tint
For race day, this goggle is a solid choice. Last-minute adjustments are extremely easy with the silicone straps that quickly slide right into place. Three different snap-in nose bridges ensure that these goggles will fit just about any face. We love that they block the glare while still allowing the perfect amount of bright light to be part of your swim experience. Anti-fog coating and a leak-free fit will give you the confidence needed to focus on your stroke.
TYR Polarized Special Ops 2.0
The draw: Glare-defeating optics
Sighting becomes easier and peripheral vision opens up with the Special Ops 2.0. These provide a more mask-like feel than other goggles in this roundup. With a relatively long nosepiece and eye gaskets that extend higher than some other goggles, these are clearly made to stay in place—and that’s just what we discovered during open-water tests. The polarized lenses block any reflection that might otherwise disrupt your swim rhythm.
Aqua Sphere Eagle
$33 (+ $13 for custom optics),
The draw: Vision correction
Looking for the ability to use a prescription lens in your goggle? The simple “pop-and-swap” lens replacement process allows you to take advantage of the Eagle Optics prescription lens system. Available individually in half-step increments from -1.5 to – 6.0, you’ll be able to select lenses to correct your eyesight. The one-piece construction was comfortable through long sets, and 100 percent UVA and UVB protection is a bonus. The clear lens is ideal for indoor pools and low-light conditions.