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SWFL football teams tackle heat exhaustion

Posted at 4:58 AM, Aug 12, 2022
and last updated 2022-08-12 04:58:45-04

LEE COUNTY, Fla. — For some teams in southwest Florida, they're taking the field in the afternoon.

For others, they're trying to beat the heat in the early morning.

"We wouldn't even be able to get a practice in if it wasn't for us coming out here early in the mornings," said Herbans Paul.

For East Lee County, this is one of those ways they're able to fight that scorching heat, we see in Florida.

"You get sort of a simulation for the game," said Paul. "As far as the weather goes, and we get to get out here instead of going inside. So quality reps that we need."

But not every team gets the opportunity to hold their practices in the morning.

For teams like Golden Gate, they're having to find other ways to keep their kids safe, during those afternoon practices.

"We're in our second day of just uppers," said Nick Bigica. "Following our heat accusation period. And we follow the new rules of the Zackary Martin act."

For those who don't know what coach is explaining; the Zachary Martin Act now enforces these new guidelines.

Which means, any time practice is performed outside, where the temperature is between 87.1 and 90 degrees, the practice must be limited to two hours.

They also only have their players in helmets, shoulder pads, and shorts.

And any time the temperature reaches 92.1 degrees or higher, then there can be no outside workouts at all, until the temps tire cools down.

"So following that," said Bigica, "I mean, I really have a great team around me that makes it easy. Our administration and downtown does a great job of keeping up and giving us the tools we need."

According to our Fox 4 records, we ranked the 3rd hottest July on record.

Actually averaging 85.3 degrees.

That’s why they’re taking the necessary precautions to make sure their kids are safe.

That’s why Dunbar High School is holding its practices after school.

And also making sure they’re keeping their players hydrated.

“We are hydrating every 10-15 minutes," said Sam Brown. "We got them playing at night. You know, 7 o’clock is the coolest part of the day so, we’ve been doing everything necessary to keep these guys hydrated.”

So that when the team takes the field this Aug. 19, they’ll be ready to go and chase after that state title.

“We are able to get out here," said Brown, "we’re gonna turn the lights on in a little bit and we’re gonna get better tonight.”