It"s a smartphone world and there are apps for literally everything, including surf. The truth is when you"re planning your surf holidays in Portugal or anywhere else, you mean to be careful, but no matter how hard you try, sometimes you just wipeout.
A first aid kit for surf holidays
Well no, surf is no more dangerous than any other sport, not even golf. Yes, golf appears to be a rather innocuous sport, but sometimes, being on top of a hill during a thunderstorm is just too much for your karma to take. If you take your precautions and are a reasonably wise person, surf is anything but dangerous, but when the swell gets tougher and the tubes grow, even the best can wipeout.
And the sea is a dangerous mistress, as the saying goes. Once you"re off the board, there are plenty of dangers under the water, from scrapping the sand bottoms to reef cuts, and from foul balls to fin gashes. Surfers know that the sea can be unpredictable and emergency situations will arise if they have to. So the idea is: how much more can you do?
If you reach a point during your surf holidays when the worse happens, despite all care and preparation, the best you can do is spring to action with the best possible information at your disposal. First, you should certainly always carry a first aid kit with you. It"s contents will vary, of course.
Key to the decision to where you"re heading for your surf holidays is knowing beforehand what the conditions are like. Know the fauna and the flora, the maritime conditions and the top dangers. During your surf holidays in Portugal, it"s highly unlikely you"ll find yourself isolated from medical help for several days and at the mercy of exotic, poisonous, fauna, but here is the bare minimum you should have with you:
- Prescription medicines, if any. You won"t want to make matters worse for not having proper medicines for you health conditions while you wait for help to come.
- Tools. This means scissors, tweezers, pocket knives, basically anything you will need to act fast and deal with a wound.
- Bandages, hydrocortisone, disinfectants, adhesives.
It"s always better safe than sorry, so whatever you need, make sure you pack it.
Enter the smartphone
Many surfers have been put to the test when they or a friend suffered an accident that required medical attention. In these instances, even if you have a first aid kit with you, maybe you"re not sure what you should do. Maybe your medical knowledge is lacking, and taking a first aid crash course will always be useful. In fact, it"s highly advisable that every serious surfer should get some form of water and first aid training.
But until then, you can visit the app store with your Android or iOS and check out Surf First Aid, by Global Surf Alliance. This is an encyclopedia of sorts, put together by health professionals and surfers to help you more properly identify dangers and react to them. Most - if not all - of the dangers and mishaps a surfer can run into are contemplated by the app, so that you can actually save lives by identifying problems early on.
One of the best aspects of the app is that it"s fully available offline, meaning you get access to information and advice, even if you don"t have access to a network. This will certainly allow you to deal better with wounds and even save lives, if bad comes to worse.
After all, when was the last time you went on surf holidays without your smartphone? Since you have it, you may just as well use it to protect yourself from bad mojo.
Just remember: on your next surf holidays in Portugal, make sure you come prepared to fully enjoy some of the best waves in the world, without taking any chances.