How Sorry Seasick Sufferers can Find their Sea Legs

yacht sailing

Oh no, it’s that Queasy Feeling
No, you’re not alone. Seasickness, also known as motion sickness, is a horrible feeling that most of us feel at some point in our seafaring career when we’re out yacht sailing on choppy water. First you might start sweating even if it’s cold, then you can go white as a sheet, you find yourself drooling like a St. Bernard ,your head explodes in pain and you hide your face in shame and misery as you dash for the deck. Gruesome.

What’s Up, Doc?
Within the inner ear are hardwired “gyroscopes” that assist us in maintaining our balance. As land-based mammals we now only tend to rattle those gyroscopes a little each day, so when variations in motion overwhelm the system they result in motion sickness and a miserable time at sea.

Even fish get seasick. Well, they do if you put them on a plane, as one German scientist did to prove that he wasn’t the only one barfing as soon as his feet left the shore.

Ocean swells can cause the boat (and persons onboard) to move along a fore and aft horizontal axis, and simultaneously and up and down vertical axis. This classic churning motion overloads our internal balance system and results in symptoms that are designed to prompt us to escape the motion and restore our balance. But we can’t escape, we’re on a boat!

Green about the Gills?
Relax, you’re not dying. Some unfortunate cases have lasted several days due to the nature of ongoing ocean conditions, and if you’re throwing up for what seems like forever then remember to get some water in your poor body to avoid further dehydration.
But there’s light at the end of this tunnel. There are four tried and tested ways to combat the onset of seasickness that have been passed down through the generations, passed around from bunk to bunk on military vessels like an underwear brochure. These tips

have won wars, people! Try these if you’re prone to getting green about the gills:

  • Apply acupressure gently but firmly to a point on the inner arm about three finger widths from the wrist. This is known as the acupressure P6 point, and it has been proven effective in many motion sickness studies.
  • Focus the gaze on any nearby landmass or on the horizon. This helps your internal balance system coordinate with the Earth and bring you back to a state of balance despite the ongoing motion of the ocean.
  • Dramamine treats the symptoms and in some cases can prevent the symptoms such as vomiting, nausea, and dizziness.
  • Consume one or 2 grams of ginger. This has been proven effective in various US Naval studies.

Keep this information secret, keep it safe. Armed with this knowledge you can look forward seeing through the next storm yacht sailing in style, standing proud at the helm, crying from the top of your lungs “No, seasickness! This time, you will not take me! I…know…acupressure!”

Posted by Ocean Society – all about yacht sailing and Volvo Ocean Race

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