Seven tips for coaches and players to help beat the heat at football practice
With the temperatures sky-rocketing throughout the country, it comes at the worst possible time for football players young and old who are beginning training camps.
From junior high and high school, to college, to the pro football ranks, more emphasis than ever is put on watching for the danger sings of heat stroke and dehydration.
Here are my super seven tips for coaches and players alike to help beat the heat at football practice:
1. Plan ahead – Hydration doesn’t start when you take the field for a morning practice. It starts the night before when you must drink ample liquids and then that morning, when you should consume more fluids.
2. Practice in planned spurts – Many coaches run practices with 5-10 minute increments, followed by quick built-in water or rest breaks. Don’t go too long without a water break.
3. Light-headed? Take a break! – If you feel light-headed or dizzy, go take a break. Don’t take chances.
4. Monitor player weights – Keep charts to monitor player weights before and after practices. If too much weight loss is occurring, a trainer may want the player to sit out and get better hydrated.
5. Drink electrolytes – In addition to water, sports drinks like Gatorade and Powerade can provide electrolytes that help you stay hydrated.
6. Seek shade – Seek shade during rest breaks. If it’s not available, put a cool towel over your head.
7. Don’t chance it – When most people can barely walk around in summer’s high heat and humidity, football players are out on fields in full equipment and running and tackling under the hot sun.
Even though they may be in superior condition, dehydration can affect anyone.
Take extra precaution when it comes to practicing in the summer heat and don’t chance it.
At Home Fitness consultant Aaron Dorksen’s blog deals with a variety of fitness topics, ranging from workout tips, motivational ideas and feature stories on how exercise impacts people’s lives. E-mail him with comments, questions or ideas for future blogs at firstname.lastname@example.org