There’s an apprehension many will experience when it comes to interacting with cold water. Few are inclined to make a day of being by the sea during winter, and even fewer are willing to paddleboard. However, there are a growing number of outdoor enthusiasts who continue their adventure and even watersports well into the colder months, looking forward to the experience and benefits that cold water can bring.
Many paddleboarders are likely to be fond of the clear waters, lakes and rivers free from summer traffic, allowing for serene trips out on the water. Some will also pursue the potential health benefits that come from regular and brief exposure to cold water. However, all are certain to take the climate seriously, ensuring that their day is made easier, safer, and more enjoyable with the following considerations.
Paddleboarders, even the most adept, must always prepare for a plunge in the water. Even the air can, over longer periods of time, cause body temperatures to drop considerably. As such, wetsuits should be worn when paddleboarding. These thick layers, made from neoprene, work well to insulate body heat and keep those out on the water warm, even if they end up swimming back to dry land.
Hydrating the body is just as important during winter as it is during the summer, especially for those embarking in physical activities. In fact, it can even be more important since individuals are less likely to recognise their own dehydration during lower temperatures.
Staying hydrated on a cold day can also be a great excuse to keep warm, bringing along a hot drink to the water, keeping your internal temperature at a comfortable level.
When stepping away from the water, it is important to warm up and dry off as quickly as possible. This can be done most effectively with a changing robe. Changing robes not only offer privacy for individuals to change their outfits but also draw moisture away from the body, expediting an individual’s ability to return to a comfortable body temperature. Additionally, they can be lined thickly with fleece, making them enjoyable to wear after a cold day’s paddleboarding session.
There are a number of accessories that can help paddleboarders to stay that extra bit warm on a cold day, with some of the most popular being woolly hats and heating pads. Hats, as well as balaclavas, not only help to keep a head warm in low temperatures but can also be an asset to safety, with brightly coloured outfits being easy to spot from land.
Heating pads are no longer the slow-acting and single-use assets that some might be familiar with. In fact, not only are many designed for multiple and fast-acting uses, warming hands in just a few minutes, but some are even USB chargeable.
Heading to the water together, with friends and family, is not only more likely to encourage individuals to head out on a cold day but it also ensures a greater degree of safety. Paddleboarding groups generally encourage members, as such, to venture out on the water together, especially on cold days, to ensure that individuals are spotted if they fall in.