Understanding Classifications

Understanding Classifications

Why do I need a sight classification?

Sight classifications are important to ensure a fair and equal competition. Success at competitions should be defined by an athlete’s skill and ability, not their impairment. The sight classifications should give all athletes the confidence that they are competing against others equally.

For visually impaired sport, vision can be classified into one of five sight categories.

What is a Sight Category?

A person’s sight category is based on the level of sight and the visual field test. The level of sight is of their better eye with best correction, e.g. with spectacles or contact lenses. This is the case even if they don’t normally wear spectacles.

It is important to note that if someone is fully sighted in one eye they would not qualify for visually impaired sport. This is regardless of the sight level in their other eye.

Classification involves categories B1, B2, B3, B4 and B5

B1, B2 and B3 sight categories are used by most sports for international & Paralympic sport however, you should always check with the individual governing body for the exact requirements.

Only the British Blind Sport classification system includes B4 and B5 sight categories.

B4 and B5 sight categories allow people to participate on a level playing field for local and national sports within the UK. Please note that there are some exceptions to this standard, so please check with the sport in which you are considering or with the British Blind Sport team.

Click here to find out more about the processes and criteria for measuring and classifying sight 

England Blind Football Captain, Roy Turnham at the BBS Festival of Sport

How much does a sight classification cost ?

National sight classification price
  • British Blind Sport Adult member: FREE/Included in membership
  • Adult non-member: £40
  • British Blind Sport Junior member (17 years and under): £10
  • Junior non-member (17 years and under): £18

Did you know it’s cheaper to become a member of British Blind Sport than it is to get a national sight classification as a non-member.Register as a member today!

Click here to find out more about our Junior Membership Sight Classification

How do I get a sight classification?

To make sure everything goes smoothly when getting a classification, follow these simple steps:

    1. Click here to download the British Blind Sport Recreational Classification Form and Introduction Letter Ophthalmologist or Optometrist.
    2. Book an appointment with an eye consultant or optician. N.B. there may be a cost to have the sight test, please check on booking.
    3. It is vital that the Ophthalmologist or Optometrist read the form fully and the introduction letter. Please ensure any lenses you use are taken to your appointment; even lenses not used for sport.
    4. Check that the optician has completed the acuity and field tests. We need both of these to be completed! Please ensure print out of field tests are attached.
    5. Send the completed form to our head office.
    6. We aim to send your classification certificate out to you within approximately 2 weeks of receipt; however this is not guaranteed so it is advisable to send your completed forms to us in advance of your event.

If you know you are competing at an event, don’t leave it to the last minute to get a sight classification! We would rather you have a great day competing than miss out because you weren’t classified.

Please note new members will need to send a completed membership form and sight classification form in order for us to process the application.