Saturday, July 13, 2024

Kristen Nuss and Taryn Kloth Share Their Favorite Sunglasses

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Best friends do everything together. In the case of Team USA’s Kristen Nuss and Taryn Kloth, that includes playing at the Paris Olympics. The beach volleyball duo first formed a partnership-turned-friendship at Louisiana State University in 2020, and went pro in 2021. Now, at only 26 years old, they’re in the home stretch of Olympic training, spending the last few weeks prepping for the Games in the Louisiana heat.

“It’s a little warm here, so we have cramped every single day,” Kloth says, politely downplaying the 75 percent humidity. “It really is a grind in the best possible way. Every single thing, even if it is tougher, challenging — these are all the things that we wanted.”

Of the essentials the pair is planning to pack for Paris, sunglasses are at the top of their list. “I don’t think I could play this sport without them,” Nuss says, showing off a pair with pink polarized lenses from Zenni Optical’s new line of sports performance sunglasses. “We probably will, throughout the games, be wearing different ones depending on what the sun is doing.”

People might assume beach volleyball players wear glasses purely for protection from the sun, but according to Nuss and Kloth, the real reason is actually much more layered. “Almost like goggles, our glasses are necessary,” Kloth says, explaining how glasses protect from sand, sun, wayward volleyballs, and everything in between. “It [can be] the smallest grain of sand, but it can just irritate your eyes so much.” Nuss and Kloth prefer Zenni for the impact-resistant polycarbonate lenses, 180-degree view, and adjustable nose pads to prevent slippage.

Beyond sunglasses, there’s another Olympic staple the two would never play without: their matching friendship anklets. The ankle bracelets were originally a gift from Nuss to Kloth, decorated with the date “August 11, 2024” — the day the two intend to be gold medalists together. “We actually made a fun little braid design,” Nuss says. “Now we have, holding our anklet together: red, white, and blue colors.”

The pair’s trajectory to gold has already moved faster than they could’ve dreamed of. They deal with the pressure by leaning on each other: the ultimate Olympics essential. “I needed somebody else. I could not have done it alone,” Kloth says. “I mean, there’s some days where I wake up and I’m like, ‘Oh my gosh, I do not want to go to the gym,’ or ‘I do not want to go to practice,’ but Kristen’s over here dancing,” she laughs.

“She has energy, I have to find energy. I’m going to get through this. I’m going to go because I can’t let her down.”

Shop Nuss and Kloth’s ApexRacer Pro sunglasses ($127) below, and get ready for them to go for the gold.

Chandler Plante is an assistant editor for PS Health & Fitness. Previously, she worked as an editorial assistant for People magazine and contributed to Ladygunn, Millie, and Bustle Digital Group. In her free time, she overshares on the internet, creating content about chronic illness, beauty, and disability.

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