Winter is over and the summer heat seems to have just begun. In sports, it is especially important to be in tune with the weather. The sun, the heat and the humidity can make a dramatic difference to the way you play and the enjoyment you get out of it.
Here are a few ways to have fun in the sun:
∑ If you arenít a cricketer, and can avoid playing when the sun is at its peak (from 11 am to 2 pm), please do so. Itís more comfortable working out, practicing and playing matches in the mornings and evenings.
∑ Drink plenty of water before, during and after a match. Drink enough to feel comfortably full, whether thirsty or not. If you're playing in a tournament or an extra-long match, also drink a carbohydrate-electrolyte sports drink.
∑ Apply waterproof, broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF to the exposed parts of your body. Don't forget the ears and lips. Exposure to the sun can cause cancer, and there is no harm in protecting yourself. Use plenty of sunscreen and reapply it once every hour during sun exposure. Don't be fooled by overcast skies -- use sunscreen even on cloudy days. A majority of the sun's harmful rays pass through clouds and have the potential to burn your skin.
∑ Wear white or light-coloured clothing, if your game allows, staying cool. Wear a hat or cap, preferably with a wide brim.
∑ Sit in the shade during breaks or at least turn away from the sun.
∑ If you feel weak or dizzy, stop playing and sit down in the shade until you feel better. Place a cold cloth or towel on your neck or head.
∑ Wear sunglasses with UV protection. Please do not go in for the cheap, imitation ones. They can harm your eyesight.
∑ To avoid sitting in a cold clubhouse in a sweat-filled shirt after playing, remember to take an extra shirt and a towel.