Top Tips for Keeping Young Players Safe in Excessive Heat

Common sense is key!

The best advice we can give is to use common sense, and if in doubt STOP, heat breaks and water breaks are very common in countries where young players train and play in hot conditions, however in the United Kingdom extreme heat is very rare. With the current heatwave we thought it important to outline a few signs to look out for and best practices in the heat. We cant say the next sentence enough – If in doubt STOP.

Stay hydrated.

Encourage your children to drink water regularly and have it readily available—even before they ask for it.

Know the Warning Signs: Heat Exhaustion and Heat Stroke

Dehydration is a serious medical condition. Exercising in hot, humid weather can rapidly raise your body’s core temperature, putting you at risk of heat exhaustion or heat stroke.

Heat exhaustion is a milder form of heat-related illness that can develop after several days of exposure to high temperatures, and inadequate or unbalanced replacement of fluids.

Signs of heat exhaustion include:

  • Heavy sweating
  • Muscle cramps
  • Fatigue
  • Weakness
  • Dizziness
  • Headache
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Dark urine
  • Cool, moist skin

The pulse rate may be slow and weak. If heat exhaustion is untreated, it may progress to heat stroke.

Heat stroke is the most serious heat-related illness. Body temperature may rise to 105°F or higher within 10 to 15 minutes.

With heat stroke victims, look for the following symptoms:

  • Dry, hot skin (no sweating)
  • Rapid, weak pulse
  • Confusion
  • A body temperature of above 105°F
  • Seizures
  • Unconsciousness

Cool Down

When you’re done with either your training or match, make sure you take time to cool down. Even in these hot temperatures, walk around (don’t sit) to make sure you recirculate the blood throughout your body. You can go inside to a cooler room to cool off, but don’t sit—keep moving. There’s a lot of blood in your legs from the activity you just did (blood pooling), so if you don’t cool down properly and get the blood to all the necessary parts of your body, you will get dizzy, nauseous, and possibly pass out and injure yourself in the process.

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