High School Football Players Beating the Heat - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

8/5/02

High School Football Players Beating the Heat

August in Texas means two things, extreme heat and high school football. However, the two combined sometimes mean a bad mix. How can you be sure your kids are staying safe in the heat? If they keep hydrated, and rest when they need a break?

Everybody knows how hot it has been outside, we all know we are supposed avoid being in the sun without sunscreen and drink plenty of fluids, but what about all the football players, who go outside not once, but twice a day to practice.

It is a Texas favorite, high school football. Two a days started Monday for many schools in the area and NewsChannel 11 caught up with the Cooper Pirates, to see what their doing to beat the heat. "We need a lot of water out here, it's real hot and were used to being inside all day," Brian Politte, a Junior at Cooper.

They practice in t-shirts and shorts the first week while they adjust to the heat, t-shirts that allow the coaches to see that their sweating as much as they should be. "When a student stops sweating or perspiring that's when you need to worry about them or watch out because they can get lethargic, light headed," said Pat Brown, a Cooper Athletic Trainer.

Athletic Trainer Pat Brown says they make sure they players drink plenty of fluids, water throughout practice, and powerade at their breaks to give them an extra boost. They also give the students wet towels to completely cool down and the student trainers spray the guys with misters while they are on the field.

"A lot of things happened last year with some professional players, college, and high school students that have been stricken by heat illnesses heat stroke and stuff like that. So it's important to my coaching staff and to me to make sure these guys have water, hydrate," Brown said.

"We get plenty of break times, coaches know if we don't have water we don't perform at our best," Thad Politte, a Cooper Senior said.

The team practices from nine to three with a long lunch break to rest, but the coaches are very conscious of the weather and if it gets too hot, they'll go inside. The coaches are also all CPR trained so they are prepared for any heat related incident.

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