Sun Protection For Runners

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UV Clothes For Runners

Running is a sport of endurance. Runners will keep running at nearly any weather, they are keen on improving their personal record, and maintaining a steady training schedule. While some may be running on treadmills, most of the runners and joggers, do it outside.

There are two main risks for runners. Road accidents and UV exposure.

Many runners prefer running at evening or at dawn, which are the cooler hours, and the free hours for most of the working people. Those low visibility hours require wearing reflective clothing, or reflective bands or flashing LED lights over running clothes. Too many runners get run over by cars while running at the sides of the roads.

While car accidents hitting a runner reach the news, the other risk, which is UV exposure, usually does not. Runners who run outside, and train for hours, may be at higher risk for skin cancer.

Wearing a running hat, pouring water over head, can reduce the risk for a heat stroke. But not from the harmful UV radiation.

The usual gear for long runners are: a running shirt, running shorts and sports sunglasses. Wearing these leaves to body totally exposed to UV.

UV Damage Is Slow But Steady

Runner tanning UV dangersLike a tooth decay, the UV damage to the skin is adding up slowly every time the skin is exposed to sun light. Most of the long lasting damage begins when we are kids. Then the skin is thin and sensitive and the UV damage to the cells mutation begins.

Most runner’s Dri Fit shirts are as thin as possible made to wick sweat away from the body. Running clothes can protect from UVB rays, which cause sun burns. It is common to see marathon runners with tanning designers on their body from their training clothes.

But most of the running clothes do not protect from UVA radiation. UVA are the long UV rays, which can penetrate clothes, and can penetrate deeper into the lower skin layers. Most clothes may filter as less as 5% of the UVA, exposing the skin to 95% of the radiation.

Runners UV Protective Clothes

Runners who care about their body and not only about their fitness will be able to find running clothes with UPF protection level. UPF rating (Ultra Violet Protection Factor) is the protection rating for clothes just like SPF rating for cosmetics.

 Women's UPF Long Sleeve RunnerWearing UPF rated running clothes means UVA and UVB are filtered before they reach the skin. Some UPF clothes which have the highest rating 50 or 50+ can block 99% of all incoming UV radiation.

For example this Asics Women’s Favorite Long Sleeve Top has UPF 50 rating. With the long sleeves it is designed by Asics to protect runners from UVA & UVB.

UPF Running TightsWearing UPF running tights like these Men’s Perform X Tight Running Pants cover the lower body from UV rays. Together with a protective top, a hat, and sunglasses. The level of exposed skin is lowered to the minimum.

Runners may not know, but during winter, when there are nearly no UVB (tanning rays) the UVA rays are always present. So wearing UPF running clothes when training at cold winter days, as just as much sense as wearing them during summer.


Read More on Sports UV Protection:

  1. Outdoors Sports, Skin Cancer Risks and Protective Solutions
  2. Dri Fit Running Clothes With UV Protection
  3. Women Poolside UV Protective Clothing
  4. UV Protection Clothes For Paddle Boarding
  5. Do Sun Protective UV Clothing REALLY Work?
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