Play it safe outdoors this summer

By Monica Cissell | July 1, 2021


Outdoor activity is good for the body and soul, but too much sun and heat can be dangerous. That’s especially true for older people, people with underlying medical conditions and people taking certain medications.

Follow these tips to reap the benefits of fresh air and vitamin D without overdoing it:

  • Consider a conversation with a physician if exercising outdoors is a new endeavor.
  • Exercising with a buddy or keep a cell phone close in case of emergencies.
  • Exercise in the morning when temperatures are cooler.
  • Drink plenty of water throughout the day. Thirst is not a good indicator of hydration; if you are thirsty, dehydration may already have set in.
  • Wear lightweight and light-colored clothing.
  • Wear a hat or visor and use a broad-spectrum sunscreen lotion 15 SPF or higher and reapply often, especially when in water. 
  • Protect your eyes with wraparound sunglasses or those that guard 99-100 percent of UV rays.
  • When planning activities outside decide how much protection is needed from UV rays by visiting Environmental Protection Agency’s UV index at

Monica Cissell is director of information and community services for the Central Plains Area Agency on Aging. To connect with him or to find out more about CPAAA’s programs for adults 60+, call 855-200-2372 or visit