PHYSICS OF SOLAR RADIATION

Essential for our psychological balance, sunlight plays a beneficial role in both mood and well-being but during prolonged exposure, when training outdoors, the sun can cause suburn. Do you know why? Do you know the effects of sun radiation on your skin ? We explain you everything!

1/ Enjoying the sunshine

Essential for our psychological balance, sunlight plays a beneficial role in both mood and well-being. How about some examples of this? The sun has positive effects on our immune system and therapeutic benefits for bone formation, vitality and mood. It helps regulate our sleep rhythm. Our body needs sunlight to synthesise vitamin D. Essential for our bone stock, this vitamin is particularly vital for growing children. A few minutes' exposure to sunlight every day is enough for our body to produce and stabilise calcium and phosphorus.

But during prolonged exposure, when training outdoors, the sun can cause suburn (rashes) to the skin and eyes, allergies and sunstroke. In the long term, solar radiation can cause skin ageing, eye damage (cataracts, corneal ulcers etc.) and skin cancer.

2/ Protecting yourself from ultra-violet (UV) rays

Solar radiation is the range of electromagnetic rays emitted by the sun. Protecting yourself from the sun means protecting yourself from ultra-violet rays.

Two types of UV rays get through the ozone layer:

·                UVB rays cause sunburn and may be the source of skin cancer and eye damage. They can cause skin ageing by damaging collagen fibres. UVB rays are stopped by glass.

·                UVA rays penetrate the skin deeply and cause premature ageing and the appearance of wrinkles. They are able to pass through glass. They are also responsible for immediate tanning.

Choosing the right sun cream for your skin creates a protective screen against UVA and UVB rays to keep you healthy. Suitable sun screen keeps your skin safe, while boosting your tan!

N.B.: You cannot sort UVA rays from UVB! Each ray of sunlight contains both. Whatever your skin type, you must protect the epidermis from these damaging effects.

Tanning is natural protection against UV years, the level of which will vary depending on your skin type. Children have less natural protection against the sun.

3/ Be careful of solar radiation

Solar radiation can be found in various conditions.

·    Direct radiation: These are UV rays which strike the skin directly. Their intensity will depend on the time, season, latitude and altitude.

·    Reflected radiation: This is the result of the sun's rays' reflecting off a reflective surface such as: snow (70 to 80%), white surfaces (walls or floors: 20 to 40%), sand (15 to 20%), water (5 to 10%) or dark surfaces (3% on grass).

·    Diffuse radiation: These are rays that come from the atmosphere, irrespective of whether or not the weather is nice. Solar radiation passes through clouds and spreads across the entire surface of the earth.

Our advice: take care, rays are not necessarily only a risk if the sky is clear. In overcast, cloudy weather, they can also strike the skin by reflection or diffusion.

Have you tried the sport sun creams developed specifically for your sport?

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