Importancia de la fotoprotección durante la recreación

Revista PODIUM, 2020, January-April 2020; 15(1): 166-170


Translated from the original in spanish


Importance of photo protection during recreation


Importancia de la fotoprotección durante la recreación


Importância da fotoproteção durante a recreação


Grecía María Giniebra Marín1*

Yaima Gorrín Díaz1

1Hospital Clínico Quirúrgico Docente León Cuervo Rubio. Pinar del Río, Cuba.


*Corresponding author:


Received: September 16th, 2019.
Approved: January 21th, 2020.

Today, a large part of the world's population is physically inactive and has problems with overweight and obesity. Sedentary lifestyles are associated with health problems and are blamed for 1.9 million deaths worldwide each year (Escalante, Y. et al., 2017)

In addition to this worrying number of deaths, there are millions more whose quality of life has declined considerably in recent years. This quality of life has been seriously affected by the excess of lipid and toxin generating foods and by a lack of physical activity in direct contact with nature. To counteract this insufficiency, there is an activity that can free us from these evils and strengthen the immune system, that activity is called: physical recreation.

There are several definitions of recreation. In general, it can be conceptualized as the set of pleasant activities that produce joy, carried out during free time and that promote the integral development of people. Recreation contributes to the prevention and solution of problems such as depression, the consumption of licit and illicit substances, and juvenile delinquency. Recreation, in general, helps people, through the various activities they carry out, to find a more satisfactory and creative life and to find ways for greater personal development and growth (Escalante. Y. et al., 2017).

If people maintained a level of physical activity of at least 150 minutes per week, of moderate intensity, they would gain health benefits such as reducing the risks associated with overweight and obesity. This situation justifies the importance of developing strategies to promote the participation and maintenance of people of all ages in recreational physical activities as a means of improving health (Gabbard, C. P. 2017).

The physical and mental health benefits of participating in recreational activities have been widely studied. On the other hand, additional benefits have also been identified by engaging specifically in outdoor recreational activities (Escalante. Y. et al., 2017); (Gabbard, C. P. 2017).

Since the 1980s, studies have been carried out in which a relationship was identified among health indicators, levels of physical activity and outdoor recreation in the adult population. These results generated a focus of interest for various research studies that, over several years, have established the physical and mental health benefits of recreation. Thus, outdoor recreation is promoted as a means to improve public health (Oftedal & Schneider, 2016).

Berns and Simpson, (2015) made a compilation of the different ways in which outdoor recreational activities can be classified, proposed by different authors. Some of these classifications have different names; however, their definitions and examples are similar and provide a clear idea of the types of recreational activities that are performed outdoors. In summary, three types of outdoor recreational practices are identified: the first, enjoying the natural environment during the activities, without generating alterations in it; the second, enjoying the environment, taking something from it with slight consequences; and the third, equal to the second, but with more abusive actions, which may end up in a deterioration of nature.

It should be noted that outdoor recreation brings additional relevant benefits to recreational activities, such as the development of environmental awareness and ecological sensitivity. It also cultivates in people the value of protection of recreational and natural sites (Berns & Simpson, 2015). Others studies have found that outdoor recreation, which involves physical activity, promotes general well-being (Rosenberger et al., 2016; Sjögren et al., 2011).

Therefore, hand in hand with strategies for the promotion of recreational activities, it is relevant to provide adequate spaces for these activities, since it has been identified that access to green areas is associated with aspects of mental health and the level of physical activity in children and adults (Grigsby-Toussaint, Chi & Fiese, 2016) and the perception of the state of health of people (Sjögren et al., 2011). Factors such as the size of the play area at school (Escalante. Y. et al., 2017), access to play materials that facilitate more physically demanding activities, and the specialized team in green areas and parks, have been factors to take into account in the implementation of the strategies.

The skin is a physiological dress, a business card and a mark of individuality; it is a symbol of health and beauty and it is, therefore, understandable the concern of people for any alteration of it.

Epidemiologic studies worldwide have demonstrated that exposition to the sun and the UV radiation sensibility (ultraviolet radiation) of people are the main risk factors for the development of dermatologic problems as the early aging, queratosis and even cutaneous neoplasia. Gallahue, D. L. & Ozmun, J. C. (2015).  

No melanoma skin cancer (basocelular and espinocelular) is the most frequent cancer form and it is associated with the sun exposition accumulated in the first years of life to the youth. On the contrary, melanoma has been associated to the recurrent acute expositions that induce to the sunburns appearance Gallahue, D. L. & Ozmun, J. C. (2015).

Hence, photoprotection, as a harm protection mechanism, provoked by the sun exposition, becomes a vital role because it mitigates the exposure to this type of radiation and in this way, it reduces prevailing these types of neoplasia Gallahue, D. L. & Ozmun, J. C. (2015).

It is very important people sanitary education about the harmful effects of ultraviolet radiations and the skin illnesses provoked by the sun radiation, as well as against other damaging effects sun provokes on the skin and the rest of the organism. Photoprotection is the best prevention against the dermatosis development provoked by the sun radiation, as well as against other damaging effects sun provokes on the skin and the rest of the organism Goodway, J. D., Crowe, H., & Ward, P. (2017).

In the recreational resorts as hotels and camping sites, would be very profitable that the promoters of healthy physical culture, namely the entertainment managers or touristic guides, would spread these healthy messages to the tourists or vacationers, mainly in summertime. Hurwitz S. (2017). The Cuban characteristics as an island, surrounded by coast and sea, besieged by the strong sun´s rays of the tropics, demand from constant protection before that natural impact. Hurwitz S. (2017). Other activities associated with recreation, such as hiking, orienteering, cycling or horseback riding, require proper planning regarding the preferred time of transportation and rest. In this phenomenon, there is also the possible fatigue due to physical exercise during the journey and the dehydration of the practitioners that in many occasions could happen. Puello S, Massimo A. (2017).

Health and Physical Culture professionals have a very important role as health advisors in photoprotection and as educators in the rational use of the sun. We must encourage recreation because of the proven effects it has on physical and mental health and, at the same time, we must advise individually on the appropriate measures of photoprotection, as well as the most suitable sunscreen preparation, according to the skin photo type, its correct use and the most recommended habits so that the skin maintains its freshness and healthiness, despite the sun.



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Conflict of interests:
The authors declare not to have any interest conflicts.


Authors' contribution:
The authors have participated in the writing of the work and analysis of the documents.


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Copyright (c) 2020 Grecía María Giniebra Marín,Yaima Gorrín Díaz