Staying cool on the water. The sentence itself sounds a bit odd. Of course you will stay cool on the water. Where else would you want to go on a hot day in south Florida? The truth of the matter is that it can be hotter on the water than one may realize. If you aren’t a regular boater or fisherman, you may hold the misconception that the water is the coolest place you can be in the spring and summer. It is simply not the case.
Ask any avid sportsman and they will tell you: It gets hot out there. The breeze coming off the water may do little to provide any type of cooling effect. Planning and preparedness are key to staying comfortable and healthy in the hot weather, especially on a boat. Here are tips that you can use to keep your cool on Florida’s waterways.
Your body regulates its own heat through perspiration. As you sweat, you lose hydration. Even if you aren’t sweating, your body could be losing all-important water. It’s important to stay hydrated when you are out on a boat, even if you don’t feel thirsty. And no, knocking back beers doesn’t count as staying hydrated.
It’s easy to stay hydrated. In fact, it’s one of the easiest things you can do. A good goal is to drink about 10 to 20 ounces of water every 45 minutes or so. Make sure to pack extra water for yourself and for anyone you will have on your boat, just in case they don’t pack enough for themselves. Remember that caffeine and alcohol can leach the body of hydration. Stick to water and sports drinks while boating. If you aren’t sure of your level of hydration, check the color of your urine. The darker the yellow, the more dehydrated you are.
Make sure that you have a hat on if you are fishing or out on a boat. The best option is to wear a hat with a wide brim that will also protect your neck and ears. If you don’t have a wide-brimmed hat, a baseball cap is the second best choice. Your very last option is to wear a bandana or headband. These last two options are not ideal, but they are better than wearing nothing.
You may not think that sunglasses are necessary, but you would be incorrect. The rays bouncing off of the water can be more harmful than any bouncing off of the ground. UV rays can be incredibly harmful to your eyes, especially over time. Look for a good pair of polarized sunglasses that will protect your eyes and be sure to pick up a lanyard to prevent them from falling into the water should they come off your face.
When you use sunscreen, you protect your skin from the sun’s harmful UV rays. Sunscreen can help prevent skin cancer and other damage to your skin. Even cloudy conditions call for ample amounts of sunscreen if you are out on the water. Adults should lather on a sunscreen with an SPF of at least 15. Children should use a product with an SPF of 30. Put the sunscreen on 20 minutes before sun exposure and reapply if you get wet or are particularly sweaty. In addition to cream sunscreen, look for a lip balm or sunscreen stick. You’ll want to make sure your nose and ears are protected as well.
When it is especially sunny or you will be exposed to the sun for long periods of time, look for somewhere you can take cover. If the boat has a top, sit under it when the sun is the highest in the sky. If there is no top, you can take an umbrella with you to provide a bit of shade. The sun is highest in the sky between the hours of 10 a.m. and 2 p.m.
People often make the mistake of wearing as little clothing as possible when out in the sun. Long sleeves and long pants will go a long way toward protecting you from the sun’s rays and can often keep you cooler. Look for materials that wick away moisture. If you must wear shorts, look for convertible pants that allow you to zip the legs back on and give your skin a break from the sun periodically.
Staying cool on a boat can be a difficult task in the hot summer months, but not too difficult in the winter or spring. If you are heading out on the water, keep these tips in mind to avoid heat stroke or sickness.
If you are injured in a boating accident in West Palm Beach, reach out to our team of experienced personal injury attorneys. We will review the details of your accident at no cost to you and advise you how to proceed. Call today or browse our website for more information about our firm.