Forget what you know about sunglasses and sunglass brands. At least we had to, as soon as it was abundantly clear that eyewear impressions formed during summer bike shop gigs many years ago are outdated and irrelevant.

In our Press Camp meeting with Ryders Eyewear, one big takeaway was that sunglass technology has changed quite a bit over the years. In learning about some of the eyewear innovations, our chat with Ryders during the 2016 Press Camp was perhaps the most intriguing and informative of all the tech-related meetings. Learn about some of the latest eyewear technology from Ryders in the pages below:

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Ryders Eyewear, Press Camp 2016. © Cyclocross Magazine

Ryders Eyewear impressed us with technology and options catered to cyclists. Press Camp 2016. © Cyclocross Magazine

Ryders Eyewear started in the mid-1980’s and came from Canada and the then emerging mountain bike scene. In fact, the company was born from what is now considered a mecca of mountain biking, Whistler, and Vancouver’s North Shore.

The year was 1986 and Canadian rider Brent Martin, who won that year’s national championships in Whistler, founded the company with the goal of providing all cyclists with high quality, performance-oriented eyewear, built to withstand punishing conditions like those found on Martin’s hometown trails.

Ryders Eyewear is now owned by parent company Essilor, the world’s largest lens manufacturer and producer of Transitions lenses. However, the company is still headquartered in North Vancouver and remains true to its cycling roots and focus but now has access to some of the most cutting-edge lens technologies.

You might have seen Ryders in bike shops, and perhaps noticed their prices to be lower than some bigger brands, but the company was on hand at the 2016 Bike Press Camp to show off its latest products and dispel its reputation as a company merely focused on price point eyewear. And in the end, despite competing with dozens of other companies and new products for our attention, Ryders’ presentation and product left us the most impressed.

You might have the lightest bike and most supple tires, but any cyclist knows that none of those expensive equipment choices matter if you have to slow down because you can’t see where you’re going, or worse, end up involuntarily sampling your course’s mud.

To this end, Ryders Eyewear prioritizes staying upright and riding fast with two approaches:

  1. Optical clarity
  2. Adapting the lens to your environment

Keep reading on the next page to learn about these approaches.

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