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High school football programs battle the grueling heat

11 months 1 day 20 hours ago Tuesday, August 22 2023 Aug 22, 2023 August 22, 2023 8:39 AM August 22, 2023 in News
Source: WBRZ
By: Mia Monet

BATON ROUGE - Even though the heat is no stranger to those of us in southeast Louisiana, that doesn't make us immune to heat-related illnesses. With high school football season just days away, schools across the area have been battling the heat.

Programs like the Zachary High School football team have been taking extra measures to combat the high temperatures. David Brewerton is the district athletic director and the head coach of the team. He says they've had to change up the practice times to beat the heat.

"Cross country and football are both outdoor sports," he said. "So what we've done is we've made a change where both of those groups come in before school. Our cross country team comes in at 5:30 and our football team comes in and we start at 6. So, we're both trying to get our practices in before school, trying to beat the heat."

Even though they wake up early to beat the sun, Coach Brewerton says it's about more than just staying out of the heat.

"What's so scary about this is the fact that we can do everything we can as far as moving practice around to get them out of the heat at specific parts of the day.," Brewerton said. "But we have to make sure that our athletes are doing what they have to do when they aren't around us as far as the hydration is concerned, as far as how much they are eating every day., as far as how much sleep they are getting at night.

"All of those things are factors that play into this whole thing. So when you're dealing with heat-related illnesses and all of those things, it's a collaboration of a bunch of things that have to take place to where we can stay away from that. That's the biggest thing that we're talking with our athletes about right now, is making sure that the rest of the day when they're not in practice with us, making sure that they are taking care of themselves and doing the things they need to do daily to make sure they can perform the next day."

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