It’s another bad year for wildfires in Canada, especially in BC where to date (August 15th, 2018) there are currently 559 active fires. Crews are working hard to contain and control the areas in question and for that we THANK YOU.
Many locals in Banff, Alberta gravitate here because of their love for the outdoors and the multitude of activities that we have right on our doorstep. We also host almost 3 million visitors in Banff National Park during our summer months; hikers, bikers, golfers and explorers……all of who are exposed to mother nature’s elements. At Bow Valley CrossFit, we love to take our workouts outside whenever possible but is it worth the consequences when the smoke is so severe? Our gym looks right out onto the Rocky Mountains, but for the last two days you can barely see them (no joke). This is a great indication that the Air Quality is poor and we should limit any strenuous outdoor activities and for some groups of people, they should avoid going outside all together.
Who is most at risk from being exposed to poor air quality?
- Children are more vulnerable to air pollution because they have less-developed respiratory and defense systems, are smaller in size, inhale more air per kilogram of body weight than adults, and they generally spend more time outdoors being physically active
- People participating in sports or strenuous work outdoors breathe more deeply and rapidly, allowing more air pollution to enter their lungs
- People with lung disease (such as chronic bronchitis, asthma, emphysema, or lung cancer), heart disease (such as angina, a history of heart attacks, congestive heart failure, arrhythmia or irregular heartbeat), and diabetes are more sensitive to air pollution
- Seniors are at higher risk because of weakening of the heart, lungs and immune system and increased likelihood of health problems such as heart and lung disease
What symptoms should we be looking out for?
- irritated eyes
- runny nose
- worsening of allergies
- shortness of breath
- chest tightness
- increased mucous production
If you develop worsening symptoms please seek medical attention. Alpine Medical on Bear Street is a walk-in clinic or we also have the Emergency Room at the Banff hospital for extreme circumstances.
Maybe you have the day off and are thinking, what do we do now? Here are some ideas for spending time indoors but still being active in Banff.
- Come to Banff’s newest CrossFit gym (Bow Valley CrossFit) and try a workout. www.bowvalleycrossfit.com
- Go for a swim at the Sally Borden Recreation Centre. https://www.banffcentre.ca/sally-borden-fitness-and-recreation
- Head to the Rimrock Resort Hotel and book a Squash Court for an hour of Cardio. http://www.rimrockresort.com/
- Challenge your mind and head to Banff’s Escape Room. http://www.eurekabanff.ca/
We don’t all love rain but right now we can only hope that we get some soon.
Stay safe friends and don’t forget to take care of those lungs!