During swimming lessons, I envied my friend Emi’s goggles because the whole eye rim rests comfortably on the bones around the eyes and the eyes can move (blink) comfortably while swimming. When I asked her what brand and where did she buy it, she said, “It’s just Decathlon” (in Singapore). I don’t even know what Decathlon is. I asked her if she can ask her husband to buy the same goggles but different color (read: hot pink) since he’s coming to the Philippines in a few days. She said when converted to SG dollars, it costs Php 700. Okay, I was sold. Pretty much the priciest pair of goggles that I bought as a beginner, but what is comfort, right?
Here’s what it looks like:
Neat right? Then, a few weeks before, Emi tagged me in a Facebook post that the Decathlon’s first flagship store will formally open on June 30th in the Philippines. Very timely! I told her to cancel my order and I will just go and see the place for myself. I went there on the actual opening day and there are a lot of people already. I learned from a friend who already went there that they soft opened already few weeks before and since the store doesn’t have a warehouse in the Philippines, they just rely on the shipping dates and gets restocked every now and then.
I was aiming for the goggles but I bought my necessities. I bought two swimming caps. Pink one for myself and the violet/purple for my friend Kat because both of our swimming caps are ready to retire. (Price: Purple – 90, Pink – 100)
We’ve been using chamois to dry ourselves off post swim, a life hack taught by our swimming coach, but I grabbed the opportunity to buy two of these micro fiber towels. (Price: 300 each; Size: large) it comes in other sizes and colors too!
I used it also as a comforter while traveling. I like the it comes with its own handle for easy storage.
A couple of weeks later, for the second time, I found myself again in Decathlon buying swimming attire. I targeted those that dries easily and fast so I can just hang them to airdry.
- The swimming crop top (bra) is Php 320, and I use it under my rash quard.
- The men boxer swim shorts I bought for Php 340. I bought this thinking it’s unisex but it works fine for me.
- The Aquabiking top costs Php 700, which I got not for aquabiking but because of its claim to be chlorine-resistant, and in lieu of the long sleeved rash guard that I always use.
And on my third visit around in less than a month, this time with guy friends, I was really set to buying those goggles that I initially planned. I even went to the official website, decathlon.ph, for research so as not to get sidetracked with what I want to buy.
Again, I ended up buying another swim cap (this time in gray-black, for the price of Php 100) and goggles, but not what I initially aimed for. A month ago, I was sort of complaining how hard it is to swim when I’m not wearing contacts because I am near-sighted. I found prescriptive goggles (in my exact grade of 200) for the price of Php 420.00 and a portable travel hanger, for Php 90.00 each. I thought prescription goggles costs more than a thousand pesos but good thing it’s way less than what I initially prepared to shell out.
Why did I buy those hangers? So when I travel to the beach or someplace else, I don’t have to look for strings to hang my wet swimming clothes. Look how cute it is, it’s even foldable:
Honestly, the longer I hang out in Decathlon, the more I find things to buy, so I better set a time limit when I’m there. My friend Jim was with me yesterday and he went ahead an hour earlier and spent almost 4k on shirts, and came back again with us an hour later and spent 3k again with lots of items. But still, I’m glad it came to the Philippines because it’s really affordable compared to buying it from actual sports house. My swimming coach said he thinks it’s still better to buy from the branded ones (Speedo, Adidas, Garmin, etc) but this is good enough for me.
*Decathlon PH houses almost all sports accessories (golf, swimming, hiking, camping, biking, yoga, badminton, horseback riding, ballet, running, football, etc.) and is located at the second floor of Festival Supermall, Alabang, Muntinlupa City.