Faster Than Skin Cancer
An initiative to raise awareness of skin cancer
Each year more and more (↑) people are diagnosed with melanoma and other types of skin cancer. Skin cancer is meanwhile in the top 3 (↑) of the most common cancer types amongst young adults. Many people don’t take measures to prevent (←) skin cancer and don’t check changes on their skin, while early detection can be crucial.
No matter if it's summer or winter, all year round...
...we aim to bring the number of newly diagnosed skin cancer patients down (↓) and when prevention has failed, we aim for early detection (←) by encouraging you to:
Protect your skin from sun damage
Take note of suspicious spots on your skin (->) fast
Start a conversation about skin cancer
Spot the Dot teamed up with those who already enjoy being fast
Meet our ambassadors
Dr. med. univ. Markus Wiesender (Dermatologist) -> Surfing
As a dermatologist, it’s my job to recognise and treat skin cancer. Your job is to take responsibility for yourself and your loved ones. You can do this by raising awareness, planning self-examinations and regular skin-checks by a specialist. Furthermore, it is very important to use sunscreen to protect you from harmful sun exposure, for body parts you can’t cover with your wet-suit. (→) Always surf safe!
Urte -> Basketball
Photo by Justina Speirokaite
There is always a player who refills water bottles during the breaks use this moment to remind everyone to (re)apply sunscreen. (->) Take care of each other!
Dette -> Trail running
Staying healthy gives us the freedom to run up there. We should care about the ones we love as well as about ourselves. So that we can stay free.
Anna & Matthijs -> Catamaran Sailing
In our line of sports, we are always outside on the water. We still see too many people on the water with sunburn. We wear wetsuits, but obviously our face is not protected from the sun. We hope that together we can motivate more people in the sailing community to wear sunscreen and to do regular skin checks.
Eva -> Roller skating
Photo by Christian Wallner
My passion for roller skating started when I discovered roller derby about 4 years ago. Protecting your skin is important. Never forget to spot your dots, even when you‘re just focused on the sport itself. Let’s raise awareness together (→) better skate safe than sorry!
Hanna -> Windsurfing
I have a deep personal connection with this topic, because the sport that changed my life tremendously, was introduced to me by the father of my best friend, who passed away due to skin cancer three years ago. All windsurfers are in the sun a lot, I would advise them to avoid the midday sun as much as possible (←) because it is even stronger on the water. I always wear a wetsuit with long arms and long legs and use sun protection with a high SPF.
When my daughter Lio was born, I became even more aware of the importance of protecting her delicate skin, since she cannot do it herself. Let’s not be ignorant about the power of the sun, for ourselves and for our children. Lio was 6 months old when we took her to on her first surf trip to Sri Lanka. I made sure to apply sunscreen hourly, she would wear a little sun hat and we avoid the midday sun.
Katie -> Hiking
My journey, battling Stage IV metastatic melanoma for 7 years, changed my lifestyle. I am more aware of my body, it’s changes and how I handle going into the sun. I won’t allow skin cancer, to take away my freedom from this beautiful world, I enjoy nature and I find peace in a hike through the Arizona desert mountains. I wear sunblock everyday and never miss it. Don't forget to reapply every 2 hours!
Many cyclists see their tanlines as a badge of honour... a testament to how much they have been out riding. As an endurance cyclist, I love to spend long days out on the bike, but I think it's important that cyclists take precautions, cover up and wear SPF. It´s always easy to think it won´t affect you but both my mom and a close friend had melanoma. I´ve also had two moles removed as a precaution. So let's worry less about tanlines, and put on some sunscreen!
Julia -> Wildwater Canoeing, Veterinarian and double vice-European champion in whitewater canoe slalom
Photo 2 Balint Vekassy
Act before, you can only react! With this motto in mind, I try to live my life particularly conscious and healthy. As a veterinarian and professional athlete, I know what environmental influences our bodies are exposed to every day. The skin, our largest organ, is completely exposed to the increasingly aggressive UV radiation if we don't protect it. To protect myself from sunburn and cell degeneration, I do not only use a sunscreen with SPF 30 when practicing my sport on the water, but far beyond. I use it nearly 365 days a year, because health should not be left to chance.
How to be faster than skin cancer
We love nothing more than being outdoors and enjoying the sun, whether cycling, running, surfing, skiing or any other type of outdoor pursuit but we want to ensure that people can experience this joy without problems down the line.
Don’t underestimate the dangers of being (active) in the sun without protecting your skin. The skin damage you now incur increases your chances of melanoma and other forms of skin cancer in later life. The good news is that when diagnosed early, the survival chances of melanoma are high (↑), but melanoma spreads relatively quickly (→) and survival with metastatic melanoma is very limited (↓).
Therefore keep the following in mind
→UV light is the most preventable risk factor for all skin cancers. Exposure to the sun is unavoidable in many outdoor sports; however we encourage everyone to protect their skin from harmful UV light in a way that suits them best. For example:
- Use sunscreen with SPF 30 or higher (↑)
- Wear protective clothing
- Seek the shade
- Go out when the UV rates are lowest (↓)
→Examine your skin head-to-toe every month. Self-exams should NOT replace the annual skin exam performed by a physician BUT they offer the best chance (↑) of detecting the early warning signs of skin cancer. If you notice any changes in an existing mole or discover a new one that looks suspicious, be safe and (→) consult a doctor.
→Make sure you schedule a yearly skin check with a dermatologist. Remember, melanoma spreads relatively quickly (→) and survival with metastatic melanoma is very limited (↓) Early detection can be crucial and can save your life.
What better way to support this cause than to wear FTS gear yourself?
Spot the Dot is a non-profit foundation working with artists and athletes from around the world to raise awareness of melanoma and other types of skin cancer. The main aim of the projects is to encourage people to start a conversation with their loved ones (and their physician) about the importance of prevention and detection of skin cancer. Learn more via www.spotthedot.org.
We are always looking for ways to collaborate. Please reach out to us if you want to become an ambassador, if you can help us to produce more FTS merchandise or if you have an idea to work together with (sports) events.
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Disclaimer: All information contained on this site is intended for general educational, informational and helpful purposes only. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice or a medical examination. Furthermore we do not want to offend anyone with our rather bold campaign title. We are not saying that you can always avoid or “beat” skin cancer. Our campaign title relates to the movements in sports as well as to our aim to encourage people to detect skin cancer fast (spot your dots).