Review: Zoggs “Predator Flex Reactor Goggles”

(Update March 2015: for the new Zoggs Predator Flex Reactor Titanium Goggles, click here)

An early beta-tester
An early beta-tester

Just the other day I was ready for my swim but for some reason I found myself in the middle of Munich without goggles. So I grabbed the other stuff (i.e. bathers and a towel), and dropped in at triathlon.de‘s retail outlet. Say what you like about the whole triathlon hype —what’s good about it is the fact you get more quality swimming gear in countries like Germany, finally. After some minor issues with their purchasing equipment I happily left the store almost €70 lighter – but the proud owner of the photochromatic Zoggs “Predator Flex Reactor Goggles”. Photochromatic: that means these bad boys have self-adjusting lenses that are clear indoors but turn into sunnies once outside. They have the typical predator flex look, but currently only come in frames coloured in black and green – hardly my choice but who cares, right?

I normally swim with predator flexes. I use the amber ones for indoors and polarised ones for outdoors. As my post about the seven reasons why l love swimming will tell you, one if the things I like about this sport is the fact that gear doesn’t matter much. That said, you better get a good pair of goggles. Good doesn’t mean expensive. Many veteran swimmers swear by the classic Swedes. I have a bunch of different Malmsten goggles, and I will use them in a pinch. You know, goggles are different for every one, and my head shape is better suited to the Zoggs Predator Flex.

(C) Image: Zoggs
(C) Image: Zoggs

So off I went to the local indoor pool. Since this was late autumn, the glass wall encasing one side of the pool building was not sufficient to get the lenses to react. So I basically swam with clear goggles. What I did notice however was that these goggles are seemed smaller than the normal predator flex models. So much so that they were a not water tight for me. Meh. (Update: After a few swims, they fit snugly and are perfectly water-proof!)

This experience was repeated a few days later, when my wife and I took our weekly date night to the pool. Once again the reactor goggles were seemed too small, so I gave my pair to my wife and used my normal goggles. You know, I really wanted to like these guys. Sure, Zoggs is quite right to announce “the world’s first swimming goggles that automatically adjust to changing sunlight”. But now I am happy my wife has a pair that works brilliantly for her…and I am taking my other two with me wherever I am going.