21 Nov 2014

Don’t Blame the Aluminum Bleachers if You’re Cold. Here are a few Tips on How to Stay Warm During a Football Game

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Aluminum bleachers at Lambeau Field

Fans in the aluminum bleachers at a snowy Lambeau Field. Photo by Santiago Bilinkis – Flickr

If your body is chilled like a snow cone during a football game this winter season, don’t curse at the aluminum bleachers.

Bleachers as you can imagine, are a necessity. But there are several ways fan can cope with the cold and enjoy the game. If you know what to do.

And if anybody knows what to do, it’s fans of the Green Bay Packers.

There are no wooden stands at Lambeau Field. Their stands are not heated like they are on the field. The fans must sit on aluminum bleachers and they do just fine.

Because Packer fans have learned to tough out the sub-zero situation they often find themselves in. It’s not actually that hard, if you plan in advance.

To start, there are few places as chilly as Lambeau Field. The stadium is affectionately known as “The Frozen Tundra.”

That nefarious nickname is well-deserved because out of the 10 coldest football games in NFL history, four were played at Lambeau Field.

In fact, the famed “Ice Bowl” between the Packers and the Detroit Lions was played there on Dec. 31, 1967. The temperate was -13 degrees. That was the temperature. Add in the wind chill and it was a teeth-rattling -48 degrees.

That’s cold. Penguin and polar bear cold.

But as you know, when the team is winning, the cold doesn’t stop the fans from filling the stadium and taking their place in the aluminum bleachers.

So how do they stay warm? First of all, talk about a giant test tube. There’s plenty of opportunity to test what works when you get a group like that all in one place.

This seems to be the best advice gathered from several fan websites.

First of all, dress in layers. Layers can trap the warmth and keep it close to the body, adding walls of protection from the cold. Jeans with a flannel-lining are cozy.

Secondly, don’t be upset your seat is cold if you don’t make sure your feet, hands and head are warm.

Yes, the core of your body does pull heat away from the extremities to protect the internal organs. Keep the feet, hands and head warm and there’s more heat to spread around.

One common tip seems to be to wear loose-fitting shoes, again with layers of socks. Wool and anti-wicking. Here’s a new one: make one layer a plastic bag to keep the feet dry. Some even suggest using a bread bag.

As for the hands, again, wear something loose-fitting. Large mittens are best to keep the fingers moving and circulating. Plus, you have room to slip in a hand warmer.

With hats, don’t throw on a baseball cap or a cheesehead hat unless you got a warm wool cap underneath.

There are ways to make aluminum bleachers nice and warm

Finally, when it comes to sitting on the aluminum bleachers, there’s an easy solution. Bring a stadium seat. Some large stadiums such as Lambeau Field have restrictions on backs and seat pads. The pads cannot exceed a certain width and cannot contain pockets, zippers or concealed areas. Check with your team’s policies before you drag the wrong cushion all the way out to the stadium.

Some cushions, such as the “Lava Buns” cushion can be heated to make those aluminum seats almost toasty.

And finally, one of the best ways to handle a cold seat is to frequently get up off of it. Stand up and cheer. Clap a lot. Pump your fists in the air. Jump up and down. That will keep your entire body warm.

Don’t blame aluminum bleachers. There are huge advantages to using aluminum instead of wood. For one, aluminum is more durable than wood. It’s better to sit on a chilly seat than to get a splinter in you know where. Maintenance for wood bleachers is a nightmare. The heat wears them out. The cold splits them up.

Another factor is that aluminum has an incredible strength to weight ratio. When Aaron Rodgers hits Jordy Nelson for a touchdown resulting in thousands of fans jumping and screaming, some on the seats themselves, you want to make double sure those stands are sturdy. Aluminum is the Clay Matthews of metal. Strong. Real strong.

Yes baby it’s cold outside. Aluminum bleachers are not the problem. Dressing correctly is the solution.

Check out our high-grade bleachers. They’re as tough as those short-sleeved Packer linemen.

Click here to see a photo gallery of those die-hard, cold-loving Packer fans.

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