Heat Policy

Heat and Hydration General Information

Early fall football, and cross-country, practices are conducted in very hot and humid weather in many parts of the United States.  Due to the equipment and uniform needed in football, most of the heat problems have been associated with football.  During hot weather, the athlete is subject to the following:

Heat Cramps – Painful cramps involving abdominal muscles and extremities caused by intense, prolonged exercise in the heat and depletion of salt and water due to profuse sweating.

Heat Syncope – Weakness, fatigue and fainting due to loss of salt and water in sweat and exercise in the heat.  Predisposed to heatstroke.

Heat Exhaustion (Water Depletion) – Excessive weight loss, reduced sweating, elevated skin and core body temperature, excessive thirst, weakness, headache and sometimes unconsciousness.

Heat Exhaustion (Salt Depletion) – Exhaustion, nausea, vomiting, muscle cramps, and dizziness due to profuse sweating and inadequate replacement of body salts.

Heatstroke – An acute medical emergency related to thermoregulatory failure.  Associated with nausea, seizures, disorientation, and possible unconsciousness or coma.  It may occur suddenly without being preceded by any other clinical signs.  The individual is usually unconscious with a high body temperature and a hot dry skin (heatstroke victims, contrary to popular belief, may sweat profusely)

It is believed that the above-mentioned heat stress problems can be controlled provided certain precautions are taken.  According to the American Academy of Pediatrics Committee on Sports Medicine, heat-related illnesses are preventable.

Extreme Heat Policy

95°-99° or Heat Index of 100°-104°

  • Access to cool water is unlimited during all practices regardless of conditions.
  • Monitor for heat related medical emergencies
  • All items listed in “General Recommendations Section above”

100°-104° or Heat Index of 105°-110°

  • Items listed in section “95°-99° or Heat Index of 100°-104°” and “General Recommendations” above
  • Shorts and shoulder pads
  • Water Breaks every 30 minutes for no less than 5 minutes.
  • An outdoor practice that does not exceed 2 hours

OR

  • Items listed in section “95°-99° or Heat Index of 100°-104°” and “General Recommendations” above
  • Full pads
  • Water Breaks every 20 minutes for no less than 5 minutes.
  • An outdoor practice that does not exceed a 1.5 hour maximum.
  • HS Conditioning should take place without helmets and shoulder pads, JH conditioning should be moved indoors

105° or Heat Index of 110°-114°

  • Items listed in section “95°-104° or Heat Index of 100°-110°” and “General Recommendations” above
  • Shorts, T-shirts and helmets only
  • Water Breaks every 20 minutes for no less than 10 minutes.
  • No outdoor conditioning. Conditioning can take place indoors
  • An outdoor practice that does not exceed a 1.5 hour maximum.
  • No outdoor middle school activities, activities must be indoors

110° or Heat Index of 115°

All outdoor activity is suspended