Seeing clearly underwater with just mask no contacts?

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Quikster

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I was practicing clearing my mask last weekend in my neighborhood jr Olympic pool, and since I knew this is all I would be doing for a little bit I didn’t wear my contacts but just my prescription sunglasses with a floating strap to set aside while practicing.

I just have a standard Poseidon mask, and while getting ready to practice I realized I could see clearly underwater across the pool even without contacts or corrective lenses. If I looked with no mask everything was normal blurry and if I looked above the water everything was normal blurry with or without the mask on. Of course putting my prescription sunglasses on everything clears up above the water.

I assume it has something to do with the refraction, did I just get lucky that it matches up with my correction needs or does anyone know why this is the case? Would the same behavior happen in salt water or just in pools and freshwater?
 

Jeff_O

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I was practicing clearing my mask last weekend in my neighborhood jr Olympic pool, and since I knew this is all I would be doing for a little bit I didn’t wear my contacts but just my prescription sunglasses with a floating strap to set aside while practicing.

I just have a standard Poseidon mask, and while getting ready to practice I realized I could see clearly underwater across the pool even without contacts or corrective lenses. If I looked with no mask everything was normal blurry and if I looked above the water everything was normal blurry with or without the mask on. Of course putting my prescription sunglasses on everything clears up above the water.

I assume it has something to do with the refraction, did I just get lucky that it matches up with my correction needs or does anyone know why this is the case? Would the same behavior happen in salt water or just in pools and freshwater?
I've heard everything underwater using a mask is seen as about 1/3 larger than normal.

This though I don't think explains blurry or clear so much.

I don't know about contact lenses use underwater as I only use glasses for small print above water, being far sighted.

I would think loosing contacts or some harm come to eyes underwater, so someone else may chime in.

If this what you found works without any cost of like specially made mask with prescription built in, that sounds interesting.
 

TMHeimer

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Prior to my Lasik surgery in 2005 (2 weeks before I took OW course), I snorkeled my whole life and could see clearly underwater without need of my glasses (my eyesight was pretty bad-- I needed glasses to see clearly on land, drive, read, etc. as I was quite nearsighted).
After the Lasic my need for glasses vanished as my eyesight was (and still is) close enough to 20-20. But, I don't see as clearly underwater as before the surgery. Now, nothing unsafe-- I just have to squint some to read my gauges. All about how your vision is and what the refration underwater does to it.
 

kinoons

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I wear my contacts when diving. I am extremely nearsighted (-5.0 diopters) so I don’t think the refraction from water would be enough to help me out.

If I was to lose my contacts when diving I think I could see well enough to safely use my computer to ascend. Finding a boat would be tough, so I’d have to signal for help. Shore diving I think I could maybe make it back to shore, but if the shore entry/exit is potentially dangerous I could be in trouble. In either instance I’d be leaning on my dive buddy to get out of the water safely.
 
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Quikster

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I wear my contacts when diving. I am extremely nearsighted (-5.0 diopters) so I don’t think the refraction from water would be enough to help me out.

If I was to lose my contacts when diving I think I could see well enough to safely use my computer to ascend. Finding a boat would be tough, so I’d have to signal for help. Shore diving I think I could maybe make it back to shore, but if the shore entry/exit is potentially dangerous I could be in trouble. In either instance I’d be leaning on my dive buddy to get out of the water safely.
yeah for seeing a boat or something far off I would def need contacts or glasses above water. I'm only -2.25 and -2.5 so that just probably falls in well with what the water does. I plan on doing contacts normally, but it will be handy to know I can go without for drills and such and not worry about the water washing my contacts away while I'm just practicing.
 

kinoons

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yeah for seeing a boat or something far off I would def need contacts or glasses above water. I'm only -2.25 and -2.5 so that just probably falls in well with what the water does. I plan on doing contacts normally, but it will be handy to know I can go without for drills and such and not worry about the water washing my contacts away while I'm just practicing.

While I only dive a few times a year, I have been diving for ten years or so. I have yet to have a contact get washed out. Only once or twice have I had a mask knocked askew and need to clear a full mask. I was able to close my eyes fast enough, fix the mask, and clear without losing a contact.
 
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Quikster

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While I only dive a few times a year, I have been diving for ten years or so. I have yet to have a contact get washed out. Only once or twice have I had a mask knocked askew and need to clear a full mask. I was able to close my eyes fast enough, fix the mask, and clear without losing a contact.
it's only during the training full mask stuff that i've had issues with a contact so far. it didn't get knocked all the way out but got rolled back on the eye and was irritating for a while until it got back into the right spot. I know we still have to do full mask removal and all so figured with that being a high likelihood of messing up my contacts again I would probably just not wear them for that day since it will be in a quarry anyway and I can see well apparently with just a mask and the water.
 

Nick_Radov

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You can just get prescription lens inserts glued into your dive masks so that you don't need to worry about losing contacts. Check with your local dive shop. Most of them have arrangements with optical labs who offer that service.
 

kinoons

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You can just get prescription lens inserts glued into your dive masks so that you don't need to worry about losing contacts. Check with your local dive shop. Most of them have arrangements with optical labs who offer that service.

Yes but then I need to either wear my mask post dive, put contacts back in, or wear glasses post dive. So far I’m happy with my contacts.
 
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Quikster

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Yeah it’s mainly the drills where I’m clearing mask and such and my contact rolls around a little on the eyeball so it’s irritating and takes a while to get back where it should be. I’m not too concerned normally as I’m not going to be trying to watch the instructor and clear multiple times like I am during a class.
 

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