Safety Check

At the last meeting of the committee some concerns were raised about the safety and health of members embarking on Ramblers activities, especially as we come into summer.

Fitness: Members are reminded to check the grade of the activity and if unsure, check with the leader to find out the level of fitness that would be needed to complete the activity.

Leaders are asked that their description of the activity be as detailed as possible, and the correct grading be applied, taking the weather into account. (check the grading guidelines on the website)

Dehydration is one of the main concerns. The Mayo Clinic states on their website

“As you age, your body’s fluid reserve becomes smaller, your ability to conserve water is reduced and your thirst sense becomes less acute………  When it’s hot and humid, your risk of dehydration and heat illness increases. That’s because when the air is humid, sweat can’t evaporate and cool you as quickly as it normally does, and this can lead to an increased body temperature and the need for more fluids.”

Heat Exhaustion is the failure of the body to cool itself. This can lead to cramps, heavy sweating and thirst. You usually can treat heat cramps by drinking fluids or sports drinks containing electrolytes (Gatorade, Powerade, others), getting into cooler temperatures, such as an air-conditioned or shaded place, and resting. Early treatment can prevent heat cramps from turning into heat exhaustion.

Leaders need to check that members are carrying enough water to remain hydrated.