Taking a frigid plunge for a good cause
blog by Ben Kirst • December 02, 2011 @ 10:53am
So you’ve been submerged in frozen water. Your odds of survival? Not great, my friend:
“Cold water removes heat from the body 25 times faster than cold air. About 50% of that heat loss occurs through the head. Physical activity such as swimming, or other struggling in the water increases heat loss. Survival time can be reduced to minutes. Strong swimmers have died before swimming 100 yards in cold water. In water under 40 degrees F, victims have died before swimming 100 feet.”
Luckily for the Western New York Polar Plunge swimmers at Woodlawn Beach in Hamburg on Saturday, Lake Erie is still in the balmy mid-40s. Good times! Maybe that water will warm up a few degrees as over 600 brave souls venture into the chilly tide in support of the athletes of Special Olympics New York.
A few bits of advice for those who want to make the plunge:
1.) Wear shoes. Rocks and shells hurt when your feet are numb, too. Maybe worse!
2.) Make sure you party. Team RANE is having a beer blast tonight at 10 p.m. RANE Nightclub (3036 Seneca St., West Seneca). Nothing cures a hangover like a minute or two in an ice bath. Also, there will be a post-swim party at Danny’s South (4300 Abbott Road, Orchard Park). Drink away the pain, my friend.
3.) Get registered. Check-in and on-site registration begins at 1 p.m. and the swim starts at 1 p.m. It will be over pretty quickly. Then: drinking.
By the way, if you raise $100, you get a free t-shirt.
Oh—when you’re walking across a nice, smooth beach to the freezing water, remember to thank the New York State Police. They cleared the sand and tested the H2O for you earlier this week. Have a great time!
(Cover photo from Flickr / Shezamm)