High school football players look to beat the heat - Fox 28: South Bend, Elkhart IN News, Weather, Sports

High school football players look to beat the heat

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For just the sixth time this summer the temperatures hit over 90 degrees, but the heat index hit 99 right around the start of high school football practice.

"You sweat a lot," said Marian Senior cornerback Dominic Ravotto. "But hey we're out here, every team is out here. Just got to make the most of it."

With a big game coming up against New Prairie, the Marian Knights know they need to hit the practice fields, regardless of the heat, because they know the Cougars are getting ready too.

Players like Ravotto know how important it is to stay hydrated on hot days like Tuesday.

"Every player counts on this team," said Ravotto. "It's important to stay healthy throughout practice."

Knights coach Reggie Glon says he always keeps an eye on his players to make sure they are doing alright. He says when he was a kid, coaches weren't always as observant and didn't necessarily stress the importance of water breaks.

"They used to give you salt tablets when I played and they wouldn't give you water because they thought you'd cramp, so it's really advanced for the players," said Glon.

Coaches say its improved to the point where most high school players know how important it is to not just drink water during practice, but also before and after.

"Nobody wants to get heat stroke or dehydration so we try and drink a lot during the day," said Mishawaka Senior cornerback D.J. Morrow.

Making sure the kids stay hydrated isn't the only safety precaution the coaches take. Some of them shorten practices to make sure the players don't get over heated.

"We cut practice by a half hour, shorten our periods and get the kids out of here at a different time," said Bart Curtis, Mishawaka Head Football Coach.

Most importantly, these players now know to tell their coaches if they are not feeling great. The kids would rather be on the field Friday night, then to end up in a hospital room Tuesday because of heat exhaustion.

"Make sure you don't get too heated," said Ravotto. "If you're feeling light headed sit out a play or two. Practice is great and all, but you got to be ready for Friday night."

An athletic trainer at Mishawaka says he always has an ice bath ready to go in case a kid gets overheated at practice. The trainer also encourages the players to hop in cold tub after practice to cool them down.

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