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Boat Maintenance: This Is How to Take Care of a Boat

Did you know that boat sales in North America are soaring? In 2019, there were 280,000 new boats sold, including personal watercraft boats, wake sport boats, and cruiser boats.

Having a boat gives you great freedom and can open up a world of new hobbies, which is probably why sales are expected to rise in the upcoming years. However, owning a boat isn’t all fun and games, if you want your boat to last you need to properly maintain and look after it.

Read on to find out how to take care of your boat, with our crucial boat maintenance tips.

How to Take Care of a Boat

Every good sailor knows there are regular boat care checks you need to make before you take your vessel out in the water. However, when taking care of a boat, there are also several checks you need to do monthly and/or annually too. All these checks may seem silly, but it’s better to look after your boat and repair any damage sooner rather than later.

Clean Your Boat

Any time you go out on your boat, you need to make sure you clean it afterward. Dirt on the canvass or upholstery can encourage mold and mildew to grow, which can ruin your boat.

You also need to regularly clean, polish, and wax the fiberglass gel coat, This will help to protect your boat from oxidation and it’ll also ensure your boat looks slick.

Another aspect of your regular cleaning should be to lubricate fittings and parts of your boat. You can also take care of a boat by declogging and cleaning your bilge; dirty bilges mean that you might not notice disastrous leaking fuel.

If you go out on seawater, you also need to flush out your engine, to ensure that the salt in the water doesn’t ruin your boat.

Annual Check-Up

One of the greatest boat care tips is to have a professional check your boat every year. Unless you’re an expert in boat maintenance, it’s always much easier to leave the technical checks to those who know what they’re doing. The professionals will have access to all the latest tools and parts that’ll make looking after your boat much easier.

If you do want to do the checks yourself, remember to check and change your engine’s oil, lubricate your boat’s fittings, and paint the hull. You might also need to make repairs if your boat has encountered any damage that season.

Store Your Boat

Once the season is over, or you won’t be using the boat for several weeks or months, you need to make sure you store your boat safely. Some people choose to store their boats at home, but if you don’t have space for it then this can be an issue. Luckily, there are boat storage facilities where you can safely and securely store your vessel.

Not sure how to choose a boat storing facility? Have a look here to see what factors you need to consider before finding a storage space that’s right for your boat.

Keep Your Vessel in Shipshape With Our Boat Maintenance Tips

Follow our boat maintenance tips to ensure your vessel is safe and can continue to sail for many years to come. Remember to carry out regular checks and cleaning routines of your boat, as well as annual checks.

Read our other articles to find more tips on how to look after your boat and all the great places you can set sail to.

How to Use Poker as a Mindfulness Practice

Most common mindfulness practices are fundamentally simple. Things like deep breathing, counted breaths, and short breaks and walks can help to calm us, clear our minds, and generate simultaneous states of relaxation and awareness. As much purpose as these small, simple practices have though, there are also some more involved activities that can assist with the development of greater mindfulness. And it may surprise some to learn that the game of poker is among them.

Gaming and Meditation

It is first important to understand that a link has been established between gaming and meditation in general. For a long time there were a lot of misconceptions about gaming as an active, almost violent practice meant solely for young people. But perceptions have changed over time. We now understand that people in all age groups play games of all kinds, and we further accept that a lot of these games have meditative qualities. Gamer testaments and a few scientific studies alike have indicated that the right game can have a soothing effect on one’s mental state.

This is the case with poker as well. A passion for many around the world, it’s a unique game that doesn’t necessarily fall under the umbrella of traditional “gaming” as we tend to think of the term. It is nonetheless similar with regard to mindfulness, however. Approached with intention, it can be a calming, almost meditative hobby for players.

Mental and Emotional Calm

When considering the game of poker specifically, one tends to think first of strategy, luck, and mathematics. In some sense, these are the building blocks of any given game of poker, and it will of course be important for any aspiring player to learn how they all factor in. However, what really helps successful players to win at poker is a sound mindset. The manifestation of a sound overall poker game requires that players learn to accept defeat and to avoid getting too high from a win. It demands reasonable approaches to betting and competition, clear-eyed social interaction, and the ability to operate without ego.

Add those factors up, and what success in poker really demands is mental and emotional calm. Players need skill and strategy to be sure, but above all else they need to be able to clear their minds of various pressures and shut out hasty impulses. This in and of itself is nearly a form of meditation, and certainly serves as a sort of training for mindfulness practice.

Focused Meditation

Beyond helping players to establish a general sense of mental and emotional calm, poker also leads to an ability to focus that, in its own way, is meditative. Generally, a focused meditation is described as the practice of focusing on something intently as a way of staying in the present moment and slowing down inner dialogue. It more or less means zeroing in on one subject to the exclusion of all else for the purpose of clearing one’s head — which is pretty much exactly what one has to do in poker! Even the slightest distraction can be a problem, and while the game demands a lot of attention it still makes for such narrow focus that one can clear one’s mind in a useful and soothing way.

Even given all of these benefits, poker does not comprise an entire mindfulness or meditation routine. For those interested in working on these aspects of personal wellness though, it’s always good to have one more option! Some will find this simple, popular card game to be legitimately beneficial.

If you enjoyed this article, you might also like our piece on how to boost your energy, especially useful as we enter a new year and search for fresh motivations!

Earfree Nitebuds: For Better Sleep

Earfree Nitebuds, the two-in-one speaker and pillow that plays calming music, improving the quality of your sleep, is launching on Indiegogo.

The idea for the Nitebuds sleep pillow came from people who used to sleep with earphones in. Many of us who have trouble sleeping at night use earphones to listen to calming sleep music, but sleeping with earphones in is just too uncomfortable. Using earphones while you sleep can cause pain and inflammation in the ear; plus, earphones tend to fall out in the middle of the night. But the adverse effects of earphones on ear health is undoubtedly the most critical of these issues.

Nitebuds puts music IN the pillow to solve the problems caused by conventional earbuds. All you have to do is lay your head down on the pillow to be serenated with lovely music. There’s no earbuds involved – so you can roll around in bed all you like without having to worry about damage to your ears or earbuds falling out.

Nitebuds are simple to use. Just place the speakers in the special sleep-aid pillow, then use Bluetooth to pair your smartphone and begin your music therapy. Once your music is playing, Nitebuds’ crater-shaped design enhances the acoustics, making you feel like you’re listening in on a concert hall performance. This design also prevents the sound from leaking out, giving you the same quality of sound at a 30% lower volume, so as not to bother whoever’s sleeping next to you.

The Nitebuds app also provides free ASMR music and ambience, soothing the brain and easing any anxiety. This white noise works has great benefits on mental health and attentiveness, making the sleep music from the Nitebuds app particularly effective at inducing a natural sleep.

Nitebuds uses 3D mesh material for full, fluffy comfort. The mesh also helps the music play through the pillow without getting muffled, plus high-quality microfiber cotton is also used to give the perfect amount of depth and coziness. The microfiber cotton is also a renewable, biodegradable material, which means Nitebuds is eco-friendly, too.

Even though Nitebuds is electronic, the speaker and pillow are fully separable, meaning the pillow can be washed without issue. If you want, you can even use the pillow by itself without the speakers, or even place other items inside the pillow to help you sleep.

For instance, if you find yourself sweating a lot in those hot summer nights, you can place ice-packs in the pillow to help cool off. Or, when you’re stressed out and in the mood for aromatherapy, the CYPRESS insert can be used for some phytoncide healing.

Also, if you have a preference for a specific pillow height, just use the COTTON insert to adjust the pillow’s height to your preference.

You can back Earfree Nitebuds – the high-tech pillow that serenades you to sleep – by finding their campaign on Indiegogo.