Superspecs, the only statewide program of its kind to offer free protective eyewear to children ages 18 and younger, is taking applications for the 2020 program year. As a program created by the Ohio Ophthalmological Society, Superspecs provides helmets, fielders’ masks, goggles, vocational eyewear and prescription goggles to thousands of children each year.
 
“Eye injuries are a leading cause of blindness in children,” said Ohio Ophthalmological Society President, Dr. Kristopher Kelly.  “Approximately 45,000 sports and recreation eye injuries occur each year and over half of those happen to children. We know that by just wearing protective gear, children can reduce the risk of hurting their eyes by 90 percent.”


 
Kelly said Superspecs is committed to reducing the incidence of eye injury in Ohio to zero.  Last year, nearly 20,000 pieces of equipment were distributed throughout all 88 counties in Ohio and worn by over 80,000 children.
 
“In addition to supplying protective eyewear for sports, Superspecs protects kids’ eyes while they’re learning by supplying no-cost eye safety wear for vocational programs in dental hygiene, heating and air technology, engineering and architectural design, welding and fabrication, auto body collision and repair, and auto services,” Kelly said.
 
As awareness for eye safety and protection continues to grow, Superspecs expects to serve more children in 2020.
 
It only takes a few minutes for league administrators, parents and teachers to apply online at www.superspecs.org. Multiple teams and classrooms requests can be completed in one easy application. The prescription goggle application process begins by completing the application online and then taking the completed information to a local, participating provider to complete the order.
 
About Superspecs (formerly Play Hard Don’t Blink):

Superspecs, formerly Play Hard Don’t Blink was created in 1999 by the Ohio Ophthalmological Society and has since outfitted more than two million Ohio children with protective eyewear. Superspecs is funded through the Ohio Department of Health’s Save Our Sight program and is the only program of its kind in the country. Interested schools, teams and individuals can learn more about Superspecs and how to receive free protective eyewear at www.superspecs.org.