By Jacqui Mayhew
Ortho-k lenses for sport have transformed the boxing career of Akaash Bhatia, the UK's 4th-ranked featherweight boxer who fights Ben Jones tonight for the vacant English Super-Featherweight title at the Medway Park Leisure Centre in Gillingham. With a pro career to date of 15 victories and only one defeat, Akaash is looking forward to taking the next step towards his boxing ambition of becoming a British title holder and credits ortho-k lenses as being a key factor in enabling him to aim so high. Just over a year ago, being quite short-sighted, Akaash found his poor eyesight a big disadvantage on fight night and was faced with the choice of opting for laser surgery or considering giving up on his boxing career since wearing conventional daytime contact lenses in the ring is not allowed.
Whilst some pro boxers have opted for laser surgery, there is always a risk of potential problems given the high risk of contact during a fight. Consequently, Akaash was not comfortable with the prospect of undergoing irreversible laser surgery but then he learnt of an alternative treatment - overnight vision correction using custom-designed ortho-k lenses - and was keen to see if this could correct his short-sightedness and allow him to box to his full potential. Overnight vision correction involves wearing small ortho-k lenses only at night while asleep. The lenses gently reshape the surface of the eye to provide the desired correction and then provide clear natural vision all day long after they are removed each morning.
As soon as Akaash began the overnight vision correction treatment, he noticed a major difference in how he was able to train and fight compared to how he had struggled previously. He is clear that his boxing career has been saved and he can now concentrate on progressing towards winning a UK title: "I have been using overnight ortho-k lenses now for over a year and I can now spar and train and do all the things I need to do in the comfort of knowing that I can see properly. It makes such a difference in the ring especially on fight night. Overnight vision correction will help me on the path to hopefully be fighting for the British title later this year."
Check if you are suitable for overnight ortho-k lenses .