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Night Walking Strategies

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Updated January 20, 2014

Be reflective for night walking

Be reflective for night walking

© Wendy Bumgardner

If you walk in the early morning or late afternoon/evening you must adjust to the long nights and short days of winter. I have eight strategies to keep walking safely through the dark days of winter.

Strategy 1: Keep Walking Outdoors, But Be Seen

Light colors, reflective striping, reflective fabrics and lights can keep you from tangling with a car. If you must wear black, you should add reflective striping or wear a reflective safety vest.

When to Glow: You should wear visibility-enhancing clothes and accessories from an hour before sunset until an hour after sunrise.

What Should Glow: Your walking outfit should provide reflective striping all along your body line to ensure you are seen and recognized as a human. A single patch is not enough. Look for jackets and pants that have a reflective stripe down the length of the sleeves and legs. For dog walking at night, look for reflective or LED collars and leashes.

Head to Toes: Look for a cap or headband that is reflective. Most running shoes have reflective patches.

A Vest is Best: The best bet is to wear a reflective safety vest, available in the bike section of most sporting goods stores or at running stores. These are specially rated to be visible at a distance to drivers, and they also have bright orange elements to help for visibility at twilight. These mesh vests are completely breathable and add no weight.
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Fashionable - But Reflective: Several fabrics weave reflective thread into the design. By day you are wearing a slimming black or nicely patterned ensemble. But under the headlights you are all aglow. illumiNITE™ is one such technology, and is used to produce fleece vests, jackets, windbreakers, pants, shorts and headwear.
Top Picks for Reflective Gear

Next page> Carrying the Light

More of this Feature
Tip 3: Road Rules
Tip 4: Stranger Danger
Tip 5: Shift Schedule
Tip 6: Indoor Trails
Tip 7: Treadmills
Tip 8: Fun Night Events

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Winter Driving and Car Maintenance Tips
Winter Style: Clothing Tips for Cold Weather

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