Watching a hockey game in an arena can be a thrilling experience. The shouting of fans, the sounds of skates on ice, and the pucks hitting the boards make it an exciting sport to watch live. However, anyone who has been to a hockey game knows that arenas can be notoriously cold.
Sitting in freezing temperatures for hours while watching a game can be uncomfortable and even unbearable for some people. You may have felt like you were sitting inside a refrigerator instead of a sports arena during your last visit. So how can you enjoy the game without shivering the entire time?
“Winter is here!” – Game of Thrones
Luckily, there are several ways to stay warm at a hockey game. From dressing appropriately to getting up and moving around, we’ve got tips and tricks that will help you stay warm and comfortable throughout the entire game.
If you’re planning to attend a hockey game soon or just want to know more about how to stay warm during chilly events, keep reading to find out our top recommendations!
Why Are Hockey Arenas So Cold?
The Science Behind Ice Rinks
Ice rinks must be kept at a temperature below freezing to maintain ice quality. According to USA Today, the optimal ice temperature is between 22-24 degrees Fahrenheit (-5-4 degrees Celsius) with humidity levels of less than 50%. Humidity control is crucial for proper ice conditions as high humidity can cause soft and slow melting ice.
In addition to air temperature, ice maintenance machines, such as Zambonis, require room temperatures of approximately 35-45 degrees Fahrenheit (1-7 degrees Celsius) during operation. This ensures that the melted ice does not refreeze and create hazardous bumps on the playing surface, which could result in injuries.
Climate Control and Energy Efficiency
Maintaining an appropriately cold temperature in hockey arenas requires significant energy output and can be costly. However, some NHL teams have implemented measures to increase energy efficiency while still maintaining their desired temperature level. For example, the Pittsburgh Penguins installed LED lighting throughout PPG Paints Arena, reducing energy consumption and costs by up to 60 percent according to United States Department of Energy.
Player Safety and Performance
Athletes in colder climates may experience increased performance due to a decrease in body heat and fatigue. Additionally, lower temperatures make it easier for players to cool down between shifts, potentially enhancing overall endurance and productivity. Despite these potential benefits, prolonged exposure to cold temperatures for players can also lead to decreased dexterity and discomfort. To mitigate risks, locker rooms are often heated to ensure athletes remain warm before entering the cold arena.
Fan Experience and Atmosphere
Cold temperatures contribute to the unique atmosphere and fan experience present in hockey games. It is commonplace for fans to wear layers and even bring blankets to games in order to stay warm. Additionally, the “Ice Girls” or “ice crew” can come out during stoppages of play to shovel ice shavings off the rink, adding to the game’s atmosphere. However, excessively cold arenas may leave some fans feeling uncomfortable and deter them from attending games.
“Playing outside with your friends when you’re young is one thing, but playing in these temperatures professionally while controlling pucks, your movements, and everything else required to perform well, isn’t easy.” -Dan Rosen, NHL staff writer
Hockey arenas are kept at a cold temperature to maintain optimal ice conditions for skating and playing hockey. While it can be costly to maintain this environment, it contributes significantly to the sport’s traditions, fan experience, and player safety. As technology and efficiency measures continue to develop, we may see changes in how arenas maintain their colder temperatures.
Is It Cold In Hockey Arenas?
If you’re heading to a hockey game, it’s essential to dress appropriately for the chilly arena. Layering is key when it comes to staying warm, as it allows you to adjust your clothing as needed throughout the game. Start with a base layer made of moisture-wicking fabric like polyester or merino wool, which will keep sweat off your skin and help regulate your temperature.
Add an insulating layer on top of your base layer. Fleece pullovers, down vests, and puffer jackets are all great options for this middle layer. Remember to choose something that isn’t too bulky so that you can comfortably move around and cheer for your team!
Your outer layer should provide protection against wind and water. A breathable jacket or parka is a good investment to wear over your other layers, especially if you have to walk any distance from your car or transit stop to the arena.
Insulated Jackets and Coats
If you’re looking for extra warmth, consider investing in a high-quality insulated jacket or coat designed specifically for winter activities. Look for features like waterproof/breathable fabrics, adjustable hoods, reflective details, and thermal insulation such as 550-fill power down or synthetic PrimaLoft.
Columbia Sportswear offers several great options for men, women, and kids, including the Whirlibird IV Interchange Jacket. This versatile design includes a zip-in liner made of Omni-Heat thermal reflective material, making it ideal for varying weather conditions.
The North Face also has a wide range of winter jackets and coats, such as the McMurdo Parka III, which boasts waterproof DryVent technology, breathable mesh lining, and several pockets for storage.
Wool and Synthetic Fabrics
Clothing made from wool and synthetic materials can also help keep you warm in a hockey arena. Wool is naturally insulating, moisture-wicking, and odor-resistant, making it an ideal choice for base layers and socks. Smartwool is a popular brand that offers high-quality merino wool garments for men, women, and kids.
Synthetic fabrics such as polyester and nylon are also great options because they’re lightweight, quick-drying, and breathable. Many winter athletic wear brands like Under Armour and Nike use synthetic blends to create highly functional cold-weather clothing. These fabrics allow sweat to escape so that you stay dry and comfortable whether you’re sitting rink-side or playing pick-up hockey on the ice!
How to Layer Your Clothing for Maximum Warmth
The base layer is the first layer of clothing you put on and it’s important to choose one that will keep you warm while allowing your skin to breathe. The ideal fabric for a base layer is wool or synthetic materials like polyester or nylon. These materials wick moisture away from your body, keeping you dry and comfortable.
In hockey arenas, there may be times when the temperature drops unexpectedly. Having a good base layer can help regulate your body temperature and prevent you from feeling too cold or overheated during the game.
“For outdoor activities in extremely cold temperatures, we recommend wearing a mid-weight base layer made of merino wool or polyester blend,” – REI Co-op Expert Advice.
The insulating layer goes over your base layer and provides extra warmth by trapping air close to your skin. This layer can be made of fleece, down, or synthetic materials like PrimaLoft which are designed to trap heat even when wet. In colder environments like hockey rinks, an insulated jacket or vest can be useful as they provide both insulation and wind protection.
Remember to choose insulating layers that are not too bulky as you still need to be able to move freely on the ice. Layers like Patagonia Nanopuff, North Face ThermoBall, and Arc’teryx Atom LT Hoody offer great insulation without the bulkiness that hinders movement.
“A zippered insulation piece lets you easily adjust your level of warmth based on your activity level,” – GearJunkie Editors Choice Awards 2021.
The outer layer is your defense against harsh weather conditions. It should be designed to protect against rain, wind and snow. A good outer layer is typically made of waterproof or water-resistant material like Gore-Tex or eVent. It’s also important to choose one that’s breathable so you don’t end up feeling sweaty and wet.
During the winter season, it can be a challenge finding a coat that will keep you warm while remaining stylish. Look for parkas with insulating layers such as down or PrimaLoft. Brands like Canada Goose and Patagonia offer trusted options in warmth, breathability, and style for hockey games and outdoor activities alike.
“Choose outerwear specifically built for outdoor sports because they’re usually designed for maximum mobility, durability, and protection,” – Fjallraven Guides Corner.
Dressing appropriately can make all the difference when it comes to being comfortable and staying warm in cold hockey arenas. Remember to always have a base layer to regulate temperature, an insulating layer to provide warmth, and an outer layer for added protection. Choose high-quality materials that are durable and lightweight so you can move freely on the ice without being weighed down by bulky clothing. And stay safe, healthy and warm throughout the game!
What Accessories Will Keep You Warm in a Hockey Arena?
If you’re one of the millions of hockey fans that fill arenas every year to cheer on their favorite teams, you know how cold it can get inside. With temperatures often dipping well below freezing, having warm accessories is crucial for enjoying the game without freezing. Here are some tips and suggestions for what accessories will keep you warm in a hockey arena:
Warm Hats and Beanies
One essential item to have when attending a hockey game is a warm hat or beanie. By covering your head with a thick, insulated fabric, you’ll be able to retain heat as it escapes from your body through your exposed scalp. Consider investing in a beanie made from wool or fleece materials as they offer thickness and warmth to prevent heat loss.
“Wear a really comfortable and warm winter hat” -Natalie Gulbis
Gloves and Mittens
Another must-have accessory when attending a hockey game is gloves or mittens. These items help keep your hands warm by trapping heat within them and protecting them from wind chill. Gloves with insulation and water-resistant fabrics are best to provide warmth and comfort. For those who usually experience sweaty palms, consider going for moisture-wicking material like nylon and spandex mix.
“The charm of gloves is that they cover everything but betray nothing.” -Virginia Graham
Scarf or Neck Gaiter
Your neck and face are particularly susceptible to chilly conditions in an ice rink, and wrapping them up with a scarf or neck gaiter can significantly help reduce discomfort. A scarf made out of wool or polar fleece is better suited especially if you want full coverage since these fabrics provide extra insulation. Fleece neck gaiters are also an excellent alternative since they’re easy to wear and will stay put when you move around.
“A scarf has to be the most versatile item in your wardrobe.” -Taye Hansberry
Hand and Feet Warmers
If you’re someone who has difficulties keeping extremities, like toes and fingers, warm in cold environments, then consider bringing some hand or feet warmers with you. These warmers can fit inside your gloves, socks, and shoes giving heat directly to those sensitive areas. They’re either battery-powered or air-activated units that come as small packets and give off continuous warmth for several hours.
“Cold hands, warm heart” -Unknown
Dressing appropriately to a hockey game is essential to enjoy it fully despite its frigid atmosphere. With these accessories – hats, gloves, scarves, and warmers, you can comfortably cheer on your team without worrying about the icy conditions. Stay warm at even the coldest of games by adding any of these items to your winter outfit arsenal!
How to Stay Warm During Intermissions
Move Around and Stretch Your Muscles
As exciting as hockey games are, they can also be cold, especially during intermissions when the ice resurfaces. To avoid feeling chilly and stiff, it’s a good idea to move around during these breaks.
You don’t have to run laps or do strenuous exercises to get your body warmed up. Simply walking around the arena, doing some light stretching, or even jogging in place for a few minutes can help you stay warm and prevent stiffness from setting in.
In addition to keeping you comfortable, moving around during intermissions is beneficial for your overall health. According to the Harvard Health Blog, frequent movement helps improve circulation, reduce muscle tension, and increase flexibility.
Hot Beverages and Snacks
If moving around isn’t enough to keep you warm during intermissions, consider indulging in some hot beverages and snacks.
The concession stands at most hockey arenas offer a variety of warming treats, such as hot cocoa, tea, coffee, and soup. If you prefer something sweet, grab a hot pretzel or popcorn to munch on while you’re watching the game.
According to the National Health Service (NHS), sipping on hot drinks and eating warm foods can help raise your core temperature and make you feel more comfortable in colder environments.
It’s important to choose snacks that won’t leave you feeling sluggish or bloated. Stick to light, easy-to-digest options like fruit, nuts, or whole-grain crackers with hummus.
“Warm beverages can help maintain body temperature, but it must be understood that they do not affect heat loss from other areas of the skin.” -Dr. Rachel Vreeman, Assistant Professor of Pediatrics at Indiana University School of Medicine
The key to staying warm during hockey intermissions is finding a balance between movement, warmth, and comfort. Whether you’re stretching your legs or sipping on hot cocoa, these strategies will help ensure you enjoy every moment of the game without feeling chilled to the bone.
What Foods and Drinks Will Keep You Warm During the Game?
Hot Chocolate or Coffee
If you’re looking for a classic winter drink to warm both your hands and stomach, hot chocolate or coffee is an excellent choice. The warmth from each sip will help keep you cozy throughout the game. Hot chocolate contains cocoa which has flavonoids that are known to boost cognitive function. Paired with caffeine in coffee it can give you a natural energy boost.
According to health experts, drinking hot beverages like coffee (without excessive cream and sugar) could have several benefits. One study suggests that frequent coffee drinkers had less coronary artery calcium than non-coffee drinkers. This condition is associated with heart disease. While these perks should not be the primary reason to consume such drinks, they sure sound good!
“Winter on my tongue, summer in my heart.” -Victor Hugo
Warm Soups and Stews
Soups and stews can also help to keep you warm during hockey games. Consider carrying essential ingredients when heading out to the stadium/game center in colder months. Root vegetables like parsnips, carrots, potatoes, and sweet potatoes, that make up most soups can rapidly provide carbohydrates and fiber; helping restore body heat lost due to lower temperatures.
Aromatic spices and herbs frequently used in soup recipes contain antimicrobial properties which boost immunity system allowing one combat common colds and flu prevalent during low temperature. For individuals trying to watch their weight, consider broth-based soups instead of creamy versions loaded with greater amounts of fat and calories. Eating healthy foods keeps one satiated as well as helps maintain one’s ideal weight.
“Soup is comforting when life gets difficult.” -Jose Andres
Spicy Foods and Drinks
One unconventional way of keeping warm is by adding some spice to your meals. Spices like ginger and cayenne pepper have traditionally been used around the world to help keep people warm during colder months. Adding hot sauce or chili flakes to warming soups, stews, and broths can increase heat in a more enjoyable manner than say reaching for a second layer. Peppers; particularly capsaicin in chilies are known to optimize blood circulation by enhancing metabolic rate; thus helps balance one’s body temperature.
You can also try drinking spicy tea with cloves, cinnamon, and turmeric that works best when consumed piping hot. Beware before indulging in extremely hot food items as it could lead to sudden spikes in body temperatures along with heartburn. It’s advisable to consult health professionals if consuming such foods falls under restrictions.
“I don’t want no plastic cutlery, I came to eat!! Give me real knives, forks and spoons!!! Because nothing warms you up on a cold day, like a widdle bit of homicide!” -Eddie Murphy (Raw)In conclusion, the options mentioned above not only keep your hands and stomach warm but offer an assortment of other benefits beneficial for your mind and health which often suffer during colder seasons. The next time you’re attending a hockey game or enjoying outdoor activities trying out these winter delicacies to keep yourself warm! Just remember, quantity control is key to appreciating tasty eats without compromising your physique and safety. Stay warm and healthy!
Frequently Asked Questions
Why Are Hockey Arenas So Cold?
Hockey arenas are kept cold to maintain the integrity of the ice. A colder temperature ensures that the ice remains solid, smooth, and less prone to melting. The cold temperature also helps players stay cool during the game as hockey is a high-intensity sport that generates a lot of body heat.
How Cold Is It Inside Hockey Arenas?
Most hockey arenas are kept between 45-55 degrees Fahrenheit (7-13 degrees Celsius). This temperature range is necessary to maintain the ice’s quality and ensure that players stay comfortable during the game. However, some arenas may have slightly different temperatures depending on their location and climate.
What Do Hockey Players Wear to Stay Warm During Games?
Hockey players wear multiple layers of clothing to stay warm during games. They typically wear a base layer to wick away moisture, followed by a mid-layer for insulation, and a top layer for protection. Players also wear gloves, helmets, and mouthguards to protect themselves from injury and stay warm during the game.
Do Cold Temperatures Affect the Quality of the Ice in Hockey Arenas?
Yes, cold temperatures are essential for maintaining the quality of the ice in hockey arenas. When the temperature rises, the ice begins to melt, creating uneven surfaces and compromising the game’s quality. Maintaining a consistent, cold temperature ensures that the ice remains smooth and solid throughout the game.
What Are Some Tips for Staying Warm during a Hockey Game?
To stay warm during a hockey game, it’s essential to dress in warm layers and wear appropriate clothing. Fans can also bring blankets, hand warmers, and hot beverages to stay comfortable during the game. It’s also essential to move around and stretch during intermission to keep the blood flowing and prevent stiffness.