Lens-less: Balling without glasses or contacts

Contact lens
Contact lens (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I’d been using disposable contacts for basketball since years ago. In an effort to preserve my dwindling funds, I started an experiment in saving money on contact lenses. Simply put, I would play without any form of optical aid – just good old myopia and blurry vision.

Surprisingly, the lack of clarity did not affect my game as much as I thought it would.


Perhaps it boils down to trusting your body and instincts after so many years of experience, but shooting is more muscle memory than anything else. Your body already knows what to do. Set yourself up the same way every time, square up for the release, and keep the followthrough soft. Leave everything else to physics.

Court vision

Recognising teammates wasn’t as hard as I thought it’d be. I could still see everyone moving around, and pass the ball if I had to. People are just people, although not being able to see their facial expressions made reading readiness just that bit more difficult. A lot more difficult, actually.


The most surprising change came in this area. Perhaps the lack of details allowed my mind to focus better without distraction, but I got into attack mode a lot easier without contacts. Trusted my instincts and body to work as they should, and just went with the flow without overthinking the game.

I also began to pass on the pick and roll better as well – what the hell? I’d been trying to remind myself to do hit the roll man more often without much success, and the answer came in the form of not wearing contact lenses. Strange, but whatever works.

I’m sure there will be a downside to this harebrained idea eventually, but for now? It rocks. Play better and save dough, what gives?

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