Tips for Preventing Heat Injuries:
- Get acclimatized: get used to working out in the heat by starting gradually and building up the amount of time.
- Consider the clock: avoid the hottest time of the day, the afternoon.
- Avoid strenuous rowing if the humidex is above 30 and particularly if it exceeds 35.
- Hydrate. Begin hydrating several hours before practising and continue to hydrate during the activity. Row Canada recommends 150 to 250 ml of fluid every 15 minutes.
- Always hydrate ahead of time with water, not sugary sports drinks. It is best to only consume sports drinks during prolonged and strenuous exercise that lasts longer than an hour.
- Carry enough water for the duration of the rowing that you have planned.
- Wear sunscreen: Generously apply sunscreen 30 minutes before going outdoors, use a SPF of 30 or higher and use a product with a label of “water resistant” to allow for sweaty skin.
- Wear loose fitting, light-colored clothing.
- Wear a hat in the sun.
- Manage medications: Some drugs can impair heat loss, like anti-histamines but there are many others that affect how our bodies react to extreme heat.
Heat Exhaustion and Heat Stroke
As you can see from Diagram 1 below, heat stroke is more serious than heat exhaustion. In both cases, cool the body and, in the case of heat stroke, call 911 and ask for an ambulance.