How fans stay warm at football games

Dress warm for football games

Lambeau: -20 degrees wind chill.
(photo: A. Walker)

 

Lambeau Field in the dead of winter – there’s a reason they call it the “Frozen Tundra.”  With temperatures sometimes below zero and wind chills rivaling Siberia’s, football fans need to come dressed ready for the conditions.

As they say, “There’s no such thing as bad weather, just bad clothing decisions.”

With the cold winter we’re experiencing across the U.S. and an outdoor Super Bowl this year in a cold weather state, we thought it would be fun to share how fans stay warm at football games.

Although modern science has debunked the concept that you lose 90% of your body heat through your head (current theory suggests it’s closer to 10%), it’s still critical to have a warm hat.  Keep the head and ears warm, and you’re off to a good start in battling Jack Frost.

One of our favorite styles of winter hats is the aviator hat.  If you’ve read Bill Bryson’s book One Summer – America, 1927, old-time aviators like Charles Lindbergh needed warm hats when they flew at high altitudes.  Bryson compared Lindbergh’s trip across the Atlantic in the Spirit of St. Louis to the equivalent of flying in a canvas tent with an engine.  With no pressurized vessel and heat at that time, pilots needed to dress warm.

Canada Good Aviator Hat

Canada Goose Aviator Hat
(photo: M.J. O’Halloran)

Our favorite aviator hat is made by Canada Goose.  The hat features 625 fill white, duck down feathers and a coyote fur ruff and flaps.  Stylish and available in over 20 colors, the Canada Goose Aviator proved to be incredibly warm.  Your ears are not going to get cold wearing this hat.

A down jacket provides a lot of warmth with little weight, and we found one we loved in Mammut’s  Pilgrim Jacket (shown here in black). Mammut, a Swiss company with the distinctive head-of-a-Mammut logo, offers a wide assortment of clothing gear, climbing gear, backpacks and footwear.  The Pilgrim featured strong construction and Megan found it lived up to its billing as Mammut’s warmest jacket.  Mammut also offers a wide variety of hats.  The Visor Beanie fits in the pocket nicely and can be used for a wide variety of activities.

Dressing warm for football

L: Canada Goose Aviator Hat, Spyder Full-Zip Sweater, Sorel’s
R: Mammut Beanie Visor, Mammut Pilgrim jacket, Uggs

The Full Zip Heavy Sweater by Spyder is surprisingly warm as is, but when combined with an outer shell, it takes winter comfort to a new level.  Alone, the Spyder sweater is comfortable in 20 degree weather. With an outer shell, you’ll be able to handle most any cold.

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12 Tips for how Fans Stay Warm at Football Games

  1. Like your mother told you:  wear a hat!  Make sure it covers your ears.
  2. Dress in layers to keep out the cold.  Your favorite team’s jersey goes over the top.
  3. Wear flannel-lined jeans – you’ll thank us later.
  4. Bring stadium chairs to keep your seats warm and dry.
  5. Wool socks, warm boots and gloves or mittens are a must.  As with doubling up on socks, try 2 layers on your hands for real cold days.
  6. Don’t forget a thermos with hot chocolate.

    Mammut Visor Beanie & Pilgrim Jacket

    Mammut Visor Beanie
    & Mammut Pilgrim Jacket

  7. Walk to the concession stand – with any luck the area is heated and the movement will do you good.
  8. A blanket will warm up the legs.
  9. Protect your face with a scarf.
  10. Someone’s going to need Kleenex – bring some. (they won’t make your warmer, but at least more comfortable).
  11. Hand and foot warmers will help some.
  12. Cheer, jump and clap like crazy.  Exercise warms up the body and hopefully it helps your team.

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Long underwear can keep your legs comfortable on those chilly night games.  However, we prefer flannel-lined jeans.  In addition to making it more bearable in the cold, the flannel provides a softer, more comfortable wear than just regular Levi’s.  You can find flannel-lined jeans at LL Bean, Fleet Farm and Cabellas.

Sorels and Uggs boots are our choices for keeping your feet warm.  Pair those up with some Merino wool socks and you’re in business.  For those cold and wet days, reader Mark Lasswell suggests an old trick from his St. John’s football days:  first layer – wool socks, second layer – plastic bread bag right over the socks, and third layer – another pair of socks.  He swears it will keep you warm and dry.

Speaking of the players on the field, how do they stay warm at football games?  Well, the San Francisco 49ers used performance clothing from WSI Sports, an Eagan, Minnesota based sports apparel company, when they took on the Packers in Green Bay in January.  The company’s WSI Sports Arctic WikMax & Heatr technology will also be put to test at the Olympics in Sochi, Russia with the U.S. Ski Jump Team.

With a little shopping, some good clothing decisions and a little preparation, you’ll be ready for the next winter football game.  Have fun and stay warm!

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