DRESS FOR THE WEATHER!
With winter rapidly approaching and winter activities beginning after the holidays, it is time to prepare for a warm and safe way to dress for the weather. It is important to know that without the proper protection our body is exposed to the elements of the weather, which can cause physical harm in a number of ways.
First and foremost we need to be ready with layers. It is important to begin the layering process with a “wicking layer”. For example, thermal underwear made of polyester, silk or polypropylene (not denim or cotton!). These will absorb the moisture from perspiration and push it out into the outer layers to evaporate. It is important to keep the skin dry. Next we follow with an “insulating layer”. Examples would be a wool sweater, fleece vest or pullover. The importance of the “insulating layer” is to keep the warmth in and the cold out. This is accomplished by trapping the air between the fibers. Finally we finish with the “protection layer”. This is where we guard ourselves from the elements of the weather. Look for jackets and pants that repel water, and block the wind, while at the same time allow the perspiration to evaporate. These jackets are usually a tightly woven fabric with some sort of coating or laminate.
Now we must think about the accessories! It is also important to protect our hands, feet, neck and especially our head. Studies have shown that we lose approximately 70% of our body heat through an uncovered head! There is flexibility when choosing your accessories. Find something comfortable that will allow you to do what you are outside to do. Hats and headbands can be found in many different styles. Mittens have been found to keep your hands warmer, but if you need your fingers, find a warm pair of gloves. It is also important to wear something up over your neck and mouth to keep the cold air from entering your lungs. Finally, when picking out your socks, look for something either light or medium weight if you are going to be outside for a longer period of time. There are also socks available with “wicking” power, which is also something to consider if you are going to be outside for a while. It is important when choosing your winter attire to keep comfort in mind. If you are not dressed comfortably to be outside, you will not enjoy your time outside!
Here are some additional websites that you can use for further information on this topic:
Winter Feels Good
This is a fun interactive website for kids.
Last Modified on 8/25/2007 9:20:16 PM