Many people like to exercise outdoors in the summer. You just work up a sweat without much exercise at temperatures above 30 degrees. Last but not least, solar radiation can also be a problem. In order to avoid the risk of sunburn or other damage to health while exercising in the heat, take note of the following tips.

So much in advance: Exercise in the heat is basically allowed and of course also healthy. However, certain precautionary measures should be taken in the event of very high temperatures and strong sunlight.

This mainly affects cardiovascular types of sport, as Prof. Tim Meyer from the Institute for Sport and Preventive Medicine at Saarland University explains. This means, for example, endurance sports such as running and cycling.

Choosing the right time of day for exercise

In contrast to team sports, where the individual has little say in terms of training times, you can choose the time of day for your private sports program more freely. So if you can, you should move the jogging round to the early morning or evening.

If the training is only possible at noon or in the afternoon, it is best to go to the forest. It is shady there and the ozone levels are lower, even on hot days.

Those with a predisposition must be particularly careful

Particularly careful are those who know that they have an illness. Especially cardiovascular patients should definitely consult their doctor before exercising in the heat.

Drink a lot!

Important for all athletes: drink a lot. Eventually, the body loses more fluid through sweating more. In addition to the recommended 1.5 liters per day, summer athletes preferably drink 100 milliliters of water every 15 minutes, in small sips. An additional large glass of water right before exercise, and then the best thing to do is to grab the mineral water to give the body back nutrients such as sodium that have sweated out.

Minimize the risk of sunstroke

If you are fully absorbed in training, you often do not notice how hard the sun really is shining. Sabine Kind, lecturer at the German University for Prevention and Health Management (DHFPH) , gave more detailed information .

In more severe cases, a sunburn on the scalp could result in a headache – and if there is nausea, fever and dizziness, it may even be a sunstroke.

Protection on the head is therefore important – but fortunately it is simply implemented, “preferably with a head covering,” says Kind. “It can be a baseball cap, a sun hat or a helmet.”

Protect the skin from UV rays

Last but not least, outdoor athletes are exposed to intense UV radiation. As a result, there is a risk of pathological changes to the skin in the long term, which can turn into skin cancer. If someone does sports outside during the day, sun protection is therefore essential, emphasizes Kind.

Apply lotion before exercising in the sun

Which sun protection factor you need depends on the strength and duration of the sun exposure as well as your skin type. In order to avoid sunburn, according to Sabine Kind, one should opt for a slightly higher sun protection factor in case of doubt.

Where you train is also crucial

“Particularly in the mountains and on the water, particularly intensive protection is required,” says the expert. In other words, at high altitudes and where the sun reflects and therefore shines even more strongly. When buying, make sure that the product is waterproof and sweatproof.


Do not forget sun terraces when applying lotion

Ideally, you should apply the cream thoroughly half an hour before you go out in the sun and top it up every now and then. Please do not forget exposed areas – such as the transitions to the headgear.

The protection of the so-called sun terraces is also of particular importance. These include areas exposed to the sun such as the forehead, ears, eyes, lips, nose, neck and crown. “It is better to use a high protection factor here and reapply the cream regularly,” advises the child expert.


Choosing the right sportswear

Even when it is hazy, you shouldn’t take sunscreen lightly. “Even with cloudy skies or cooler temperatures, you should apply lotion all over your body and under your clothes,” says Sabine Kind. “Normal sportswear can let through up to 30 percent of the radiation.”

But there are also clothing with certified UV protection, especially for water sports. However, even here tricky: the transition points from the skin to the fabric. If you don’t put lotion on yourself, you can easily get burned.


The skin around the eyes is particularly sensitive

Many underestimate the dangers of UV rays for the eyes. As FITBOOK reported in an earlier article, there is a risk of skin cancer in the sensitive, thin-skinned eye area .

Sabine Kind sees it the same way. “Therefore, non-slip sports glasses with a high UV factor are recommended for activities,” says the expert. “If you are unsure, it’s best to ask an optician and get advice.”