One thing I have noticed a lot recently is how many more surfers and other water users are wearing ear plugs. Plenty of friends have had issues over the last years, but on a recent trip it became obvious that all of us had got to the point we needed to do something about it. The solution is simple - wear ear plugs in the water.
Here are 4 good reasons why you should get some ear plugs and use them.
1 - Surfers Ear - This is the obvious one. Exposure to cold water and wind over time can lead to bony growth in your ear canal. This will make you more susceptible to ear infections and eventually requires surgery. The surgery is no joke, it is very dangerous and definitely something you want to avoid.
2 - Ear Infections - As the water companies in the UK continue to discharge sewage as and when they fancy, it makes it a lot more likely that we will end up with some nasty ear infection.
3 - Ruptured Ear Drums - High speed crashes are not uncommon when kitesurfing or foiling. Hitting the water at the wrong angle can lead to ruptured ear drums which at the least will have you off the water for a couple of months.
4 - Wind Noise - Exposure to high levels of wind noise over time can lead to loss of hearing. As wind sport enthusiasts, this is obviously a problem.
What to get?
The gold standard, would be custom moulded ear plugs. These will fit perfectly, but will be expensive. The bargain basement option, is a pack of blue tack which works pretty well.
We use and recommend the Surflogic Surfprotek Ear Plugs. They come in a handy case which we keep clipped to our wet bucket, so it is always handy. They have a few fittings to help get a good fit, and they are easy to use.