Ocean Play

Here is my second in a series of posts from my experiences on my honeymoon.

I know those of us that live in Oregon don’t play in the ocean unless we want hypothermia.  But most of us go on vacation where we can enjoy the warmth of the ocean.  So what are some simple things to think about to make the most of our ocean playing experience.

Environmental Safety:

What kind of waters are we getting into?  This one is pretty straight forward. If we are in warm waters there could be a risk of sharks.  There may be a risk of jellyfish stings. Do we need to watch where we step in order not to damage coral reefs?  These questions are relatively easy to find out.  If there is a lifeguard on duty just ask him/her.

Next question to ask yourself is there an undertow or surf advisory?  I will admit the undertow issue got me into a little trouble in Hawaii. 

My wife and I were in the ocean having a goodtime, and I swam out a little too far.  I am out of shape and haven’t swum in a year.  I noticed we were being carried out a little further than I wanted.  I started to make my way back to shore, but the pull was strong for me.  So I swam a little, rested, and went again.  I was exhausted when I final made it to a spot I could rest.   Luckily for me, I am old, and learn fast J  For the rest of the honeymoon, I made sure to stay close to shore.

Undertows/Riptides:

So what should a person do if there in waters that has strong undertows/riptide?

First:  Be in physical conditioning that will give you a fighting chance in a strong undertow or don’t go in those waters!!  Stay calm and know you can get free with a little time.  Last big pointer is to swim parallel to the beach.   I would recommend a quick read of WikiHow’s article, “How to Survive a Riptide.”

Listen to Professionals:

Visitors are not smarter than the lifeguard on duty or beach patrol person.  When professionals give visitors instructions, it’s in their best interest to follow them.  I was on the beach and there were six flags on the beach.  There was their first sign that something may be wrong with that section of beach.  Then the lifeguard had to go on the microphone and tell people to keep their small kids out of the water.  They could go down a 100 or 200 feet (to where I was) and it was safe for children. There is no excuse for endangering your children, especially because a person thinks they know more than the lifeguard.   

Playing in the ocean is something people of all ages love to do.  There is nothing like relaxing in warm ocean waters.  You can have a great time; and all it takes is some common sense and a little information.

What is your favorite ocean to play in?

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