Sun protection

Top Tips for Sun Protection During Sports

In this article, we’ll tell you how to stay protected, so you’re not at risk of sunburn, heatstroke, or other harmful effects.

Summer has arrived, and the weather is heating up!

It’s time to go out and enjoy the sunshine with beach vacations, watersports, and of course — Songkran festivities! But it’s essential to protect your skin before you do so, as the intense weather comes with damaging UV rays. In fact, Thailand’s UV index reading averages between 11 and 12, which is extremely high.

Tips for Sun Protection During Sport | Decathlon Thailand

8 Things to Remember When You’re Playing Sports in the Sun

1. Apply Sunscreen Regularly

First and for mostly, always carry sunscreen with you!

Many people wait until they go outside to apply sunscreen, but for optimum protection, it’s best to put it on before you go out, up to 45 minutes before sun exposure. That way, it can be absorbed into your skin to give you protection as soon as you need it.

When you’re putting on your sunscreen, don’t forget to get easy-to-miss areas like your ears, the back or your neck, and your hands.

Decathlon Thailand has several different sunscreen options, especially-designed for sportspeople. The best choice is our spray-on sun protection, which is sweat-resistant and comes in a small, handy bottle. If you prefer something thicker than a spray, opt for our sports sun protection cream instead. We even have a natural mineral sunscreen stick for surfers, which is water-resistant, and doesn’t contain any chemicals that are harmful to coral. No matter which option you choose, you’ll get SPF50+ protection.

Tips for Sun Protection During Sport | Decathlon Thailand

2. Wear UV Protective Clothing

Sunblock isn’t always enough.That’s why it’s important to wear UV protective clothing

At Decathlon Thailand ,we have a range of apparel with built-in UV protection, including rashguards for watersports, long-sleeved running shirts, and even UV protection shirts for kids. When you wear these items, you don’t have to worry about constantly reapplying sunscreen to certain areas, or having your sun protection compromised by water.

Tips for Sun Protection During Sport | Decathlon Thailand

3. Wear Sunglasses & a Hat

It’s vital to protect your eyes, especially when you’re out hiking or at the beach.

When it’s sunny outside, you’ll often find that you have to squint your eyes to see more easily. When you wear sunglasses, you’re more comfortable, and more protected. UV rays can cause damage to your retina and cornea. They can also cause damage to the skin around your eyes, leading to more wrinkles.

The same goes for a hat. Make sure you wear an anti-UV hiking hat. If you’re in the water, opt for a surf hat, which comes with a chin strap to make sure it stays in place.

Tips for Sun Protection During Sport | Decathlon Thailand

4. Stay Hydrated

Hydration is key, so always make sure you drink enough water.

Keep a water bottle with you at all times. There are lots of options available, so you don’t have to buy single-use plastic bottles. For fitness lovers, there’s a large 2,200ml water bottle, which makes it easy to track your daily intake. For hikers, we recommend durable stainless steel water bottles and flasks. If you’re a runner, you could use a running hand flask that straps to your hand, or even use a hydration pack to make sure you’ve always got enough water with you on long summer runs.

Tips for Sun Protection During Sport | Decathlon Thailand

5. Avoid Sun Exposure at Peak Times

When the sun is at its highest and the heat is at its most intense, it’s recommended to stay out of the sun. Generally, this is from midday to 3pm. During these times, avoid playing sports outdoors. Instead, stay in the shade or take a nap indoors.

Tips for Sun Protection During Sport | Decathlon Thailand

6. Know Your Skin Type

In order to best protect your skin, it’s important to know your skin type. Skin colours are defined by phototypes, each of which comes with its own recommendations for protection:

- Phototype 1 - Very Fair
This skin type is particularly sensitive to the sun. People with this skin type often have freckles, and get sunburn easily. As a result, they should opt for maximum protection with SPF 50+.

- Phototype 2 - Fair
This skin type is slightly sensitive, and doesn’t tan easily. People with this skin type may find that they burn instead of tanning. They should also opt for maximum protection.

- Phototype 3 - Slightly Dark Skin
This skin type tans easily, but is still susceptible to sun damage. It’s recommended to use SPF 30-50.

- Phototype 4 & 5 - Dark/Slightly Dark Skin
This skin type contains more melanin, which provides natural sun protection. However, it’s still important to wear sunscreen. A medium sun protection factor, from 20-25, will usually be sufficient.

- Phototype 6 - Very Dark Skin
Those with more melanin are highly resistant to sun damage, and are able to use a low sun protection factor of 10 or 15. However, for sensitive areas, it’s recommended to use SPF 20+. In intense heat, a higher factor may be required.

Tips for Sun Protection During Sport | Decathlon Thailand

7. Take Extra Care with Children

Children and babies are much more sensitive to UV rays as their skin is thinner, so it’s vital that you take extra measures to protect their skin.

Babies under 6 months should not be exposed to the sun, but for those over 6 months, you should apply a sunscreen that’s formulated for kids, with SPF50+. Kids also require extra protection in the form of specially-designed apparel. Try a kids hiking hat, which includes a panel at the back to protect the beck.

Tips for Sun Protection During Sport | Decathlon Thailand

8. Don’t Forget the Aftersun Gel

After sun exposure, you will need something to soothe your skin. That’s where aftersun gel comes in. Aftersun will restore the moisture to your skin that’s been lost while you’re out in the sun, and also reduce any redness or irritation. To make it even more soothing, you can keep it in the fridge and apply it cold.

Get Everything You Need at Decathlon Thailand

Follow these tips, and you can enjoy outdoor activities all summer long, without having to worry about sun damage.
If you need any more tips, our expert sports staff are always ready to help you. You can chat to us by visiting one of our Decathlon Thailand stores or chat to us on Facebook.