ROKA R1 Goggle Review
My three week swim block is almost complete, I just need to make it through one more swim this afternoon! My life for the past three weeks has consisted mainly of swimming, work, eating, and swimming. I have forced myself to love the pool and it is paying off! Heck, even a 5km swim feels like nothing now.
Last night, as if a gift from above before my 8.1km of swimming today, two packages from ROKA arrived. Talk about motivation to get into the pool this morning! I tore the box open in the elevator and was already trying the goggles on before the doors even opened (whoops!). Needless to say, I was pumped to go swim this morning and test out the new gear.
Of all the great ROKA goggle choices, I decided on the R1. Why you ask? If I'm being totally honest, it's only because Flora Duffy and Katie Zaferes wear them. If you're not sure who they are just google them, you'll understand. I figured if I had the same goggles maybe I could swim more like them...at some point in the future...after lots and lots of training...maybe.
ROKA sent three different types of R1 goggles - Amber Mirror, Stormtrooper, and Light Grey. Today I decided to go with the Stormtrooper, a clean white frame with gray mirror lenses.
I arrived at the pool at dawn with the sun beams barely cresting the horizon. I was afraid the Stormtrooper may have been too dark of a choice for early morning swimming. However, once I put them on and hopped in the pool they were fine in terms of brightness and they did not fog AT ALL. They did a great job of increasing the contrast and reminded me a lot of the Oakley Prizm lenses I use for riding. If it was an early morning, cloudy, open water swim I probably would have gone with the Light Grey instead but for the Miami morning sunlight these were perfect.
My two criteria when choosing goggles are:
1. Fit / Comfort
2. Angle of view
The R1's did not put as much pressure on my eye sockets as my previous goggles (TYR Special Ops). I felt that I could leave the straps of the goggles looser and they would still stick in place and without leaking. The only thing I needed to play around with a bit was the placement of the straps on the back of my head. If I put the top strap too high, or at least where I used to put it, the goggles would put too much pressure on the top of my eye. Once I moved the strap down, so it was essentially in line with the goggles rather than angling up, the pressure was gone and it was a perfect, pressure-less fit.
The TYR Special Ops were great in terms of field of view...but they also looked like alien eyes when pool swimming. While the R1 goggle has a smaller profile, I didn't feel like I sacrificed any of the visual angles, plus my swimmer friends will no longer make fun of me in the pool. The Roka Rapid Sight technology expands the field of view vertically to improve sighting in open water and in the pool.
Conclusion: Form. Function. Comfort. The ROKA R1 goggles have them all. And at just $30 these are a great addition to your tri gear arsenal. Oh, and if you're still not sure, ROKA gives you 30 days to try the goggles risk free! So seriously, for the price of a box of gels, make some sandwiches as ride food for the week and spend your money on a pair of the R1!
Professional cyclist turned professional triathlete living in Boulder, CO.