It’s summertime and it feels great to be outdoors, soaking up the warmth of the sun that provides us with a healthy dose of Vitamin D. But it’s important to take precautions when outside for extended periods of time.
Jazzercise Founder and CEO Judi Sheppard Missett reminds us that the sun’s UV rays are harmful if we are exposed to them too long. Here are some tips for being safe in the sun:
If possible, drive before or after peak sun hours of 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. because the sun’s UV rays can be magnified coming through car windshields, bathing your face, arms, hands and chest more than you may realize.
Seek Shade – When you are outdoors, seek a location where you can sit or stand in the shade once you’ve had enough sun. Remember that water, sand (and snow in the winter) reflect and intensify the sun’s rays, increasing your chance of sunburn.
Wear Dark Colors – Summer-weight light-colored cover-ups are fashionable, but they allow more of the sun’s rays onto our skin than we might know, protecting us only minimally, according to the American Cancer Society. The ACS recommends wearing dark colors, fabrics with tight weaves and specially treated garments and bathing suits for more healthy sun exposure.
Skip Tanning Salons – Tanning beds and sun lamps give out harmful UV rays that can contribute to skin cancer, according to the American Cancer Society. Also, getting a “base tan” is equivalent to only a sun protective factor of about 4, much less than most sunscreens.
Baby the Babies – To protect babies younger than six months, the American Cancer Society recommends shade, sun-protective clothing and hats. As a last resort, pediatricians now say that very small amounts of sunscreen can be used on small areas, such as baby’s face and back of the hands.
Go Incognito – Wear and wide-brimmed hat and UV-protected sunglasses when outdoors.
Always Use Sunscreen – Remember that the SPF number describes how long a product will protect your skin, but only if you reapply every two hours, after going in water or toweling off. For example, if a person would begin to sunburn in 15 minutes, sunscreen with 20 SPF will prevent sunburn for five hours (15 minutes x 20 = 300 minutes).
Follow these recommendations and you’ll enjoy carefree fun in the sun all summer long.
Judi Sheppard Missett, who turned her love of jazz dance into a worldwide dance exercise phenomenon, founded the Jazzercise dance fitness program in 1969. She has advanced the business opportunities of women and men in the fitness industry by growing the program into an international franchise business that today, hosts a network of 7,800 instructors teaching more than 32,000 classes weekly in 32 countries.
The workout program, which offers a fusion of jazz dance, resistance training, Pilates, yoga, cardio box and Latin style movements, has positively affected millions of people worldwide. Benefits include increased cardiovascular endurance, strength, and flexibility, as well as an overall "feel good" factor. Additional Jazzercise programs include Junior Jazzercise, Jazzercise Lite and Personal Touch. For more information on Jazzercise go to jazzercise.com or call (800)FIT-IS-IT or (760)476-1750.