Having fun in the water: What you need to know for the bathing season

There is little like a summer day at the lake or in the outdoor pool.

Having fun in the water: What you need to know for the bathing season

There is little like a summer day at the lake or in the outdoor pool. Why do the fries taste so good there? And how do I get up to speed on the water slide? Answers to the start of the bathing season.

Well, have you already dug out your swimming trunks or bikini? The bathing season is slowly starting in the outdoor pools, on the lakes and coasts. These tips will make it a little bit better - I promise.

Why should you never go into the water on a full stomach?

In order not to overload the circuit. When we get hot from the sun and get into the water, it puts a lot of strain on the circulatory system, says internist Matthias Riedl.

Because the cold water causes the blood vessels in the skin to contract, the blood moves more strongly into the body and into the overall circulation. "So there is a sudden redistribution," says Riedl, who belongs to the Federal Association of German Nutritionists (BDEM).

If there is also still a lot of blood in the abdomen because a large meal is being processed there, this redistribution is even stronger. In the worst case, this leads to a circulatory collapse.

So if you've stuffed yourself with fries from the pool, it's better to wait a moment before going back into the water.

Speaking of fries: Why do they taste so good at the pool or on the beach?

"If you offer something in the outdoor pool that is greasy and contains carbohydrates, you will be successful with it - also with fries," is the attempted explanation by doctor Matthias Riedl.

In the case of fries with ketchup, there is even a sweeter taste. According to Riedl, experiments with rats have shown that the combination of fatty and sweet causes the animals to eat a lot of it. These results can certainly be transferred to the nutritional preferences of humans.

"And of course certain behaviors are culturally imprinted," says Riedl. From an early age, many children combine a day at the lake or in the outdoor pool with fries. So it's no wonder that the fried snack brings back memories of the past - and that's why it tastes so good.

How do I get up to speed on the water slide?

"The three-point technique, where you lie on your back, has proven its worth," says Carsten Bücken, chairman of the German Rennrutsch Verband (DRV) in Dissen (Lower Saxony). But only three parts of the body touch the slide, so that you can really pick up speed due to the low friction.

This is how it works: The feet are crossed so that only one heel touches the slide surface. The shoulder blades form the other two points of contact. The bottom is pushed up, so it has no contact with the slide. Nothing works without body tension, says Bücken. "You put your arms above your head. Some people like to put their hands behind their necks because they have more control in the corners."

The swimwear also influences the sliding speed. Tight swimming trunks are better than boxer shorts: "They sag and act as a braking parachute," says Bücken. By the way: There is a tip that you should pull your swimming trunks into the crevice in the buttocks to further reduce friction. "But that's nonsense," was the verdict of the skid-slide expert.

Should I be afraid of fish or creepers in the lake?

"You don't normally have to worry in the local bathing waters," says Alexander Paffrath from the Presidium of the German Life Saving Society (DLRG). However, before swimming in the lake, you should be aware that you could bump into aquatic plants or animals with your foot or stomach. "Because uncontrolled, hectic reactions due to panic are the real danger."

So if you are mentally prepared, you tend to stay calm - and if the worst comes to the worst, it is best to turn on your back to swim over water plants, for example.

Go swimming with contact lenses - yes or no?

"Better not," says Prof. Björn Bachmann, senior physician at the Center for Ophthalmology at the University of Cologne. "But of course that's not really possible if you have a certain prescription." Then you should put on swimming goggles. Or you make sure to keep your head above water.

Reason: There can be germs in the bath water, for example acanthamoeba. These are parasites that get into the cornea through tiny injuries and cause painful and long-lasting inflammation. Those who wear contact lenses are particularly at risk. This is because the cornea receives less oxygen and is more susceptible to injuries and infections.

According to the German Ophthalmological Society, these amoebas are mainly found in standing water, but they also occur in poorly chlorinated outdoor pools.

How do I avoid athlete's foot?

It doesn't matter whether it's on the beach, in the outdoor pool or at the lake: "You can catch skin fungus on your feet anywhere it's wet - i.e. in showers or changing rooms," says Martina Schmidt, Vice President of the German Podiatry Association.

Therefore, it is best to slip into flip-flops. And: After showering, you should take the time to dry the spaces between your toes well. Because in these humid, warm regions, the skin fungus finds good living conditions.

At what age does my child have to wear swimming trunks in the pool?

There is no one rule that applies to all bathrooms. Michael Weilandt from the German Society for Bathing knows where families can find an answer to this question: in the bathing regulations of the respective outdoor pool.

However, Weilandt advises parents to pack bathing suits for their offspring, even if they are not required. "Small children up to about two or three years old shouldn't go into the water naked anyway, but should wear a swim diaper - for hygienic reasons alone."

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