WAMU 88.5 : Morning Edition

Filed Under:

Coaches Prepare For New Preseason Heat Rules In Maryland

Play associated audio
New 'heat acclimatization' rules for high school athletes in Maryland requre coaches to ease in teams to long practices and full pads during preseason's hot months.  
http://www.flickr.com/photos/elnewberry/1142199399/
New 'heat acclimatization' rules for high school athletes in Maryland requre coaches to ease in teams to long practices and full pads during preseason's hot months.  

As preseason high school sports practices begin in Montgomery County this weekend, administrators want parents to be aware of new safety guidelines for student athletes.  

In July 2009, 16-year old Edwin Miller collapsed and died during a preseason football training session at Northwestern High School in Germantown. His parents filed a negligence lawsuit against the school board claiming Miller died of heat stroke after coaches pushed him too hard during the late summer workout. 

Heat related deaths and injuries to high school athletes in preseason are on the rise. That’s according to the University of North Carolina’s Center for Catastrophic Sports Injury. Twenty high school football players have died from heat stroke around the U.S. since 2006. 

Three years later, a new state law is in effect that requires county schools systems to adopt pre-season practice heat acclimatization guidelines for student athletes. Researchers believe coaches can avoid heat-related problems with heat acclimatization, a technique designed to raise an athlete's ability to tolerate heat by gradually getting them used to playing in hot weather.

"In the first four or five days, you don't want to have 'two-a-day' practices," says, Doug Casa of the University of Connecticut’s Kory Stringer Institute explains. "You also want to phase in the equipment, so you're not in full gear until day four or five." 

In addition, the first few practices should be shorter, maybe only two hours instead of three, Casa says. He and his colleagues worked with Montgomery and other counties in the state to help craft the new pre-season practice guidelines. 

The new guidelines, which include revised practice and recovery periods along with minimum hydration recommendations, have created a renewed awareness among Montgomery County coaching staff and students about the danger of heat related illness, says Duke Beatty, athletics director for Montgomery County Schools. 

"I think we know a lot more than we used to know and I think we have a lot more information to show," Beatty says. "I also think we're doing a better job at getting the information out." 

Coaches are required to complete an annual heat acclimatization course. 

NPR

Peruvians Love Their Chicha Street Art. The Government ... Not So Much

Walk down a street in Peru and you'll likely see an example of the glow-in-the-dark posters and murals. Lots of people love them. But the upper crust — and the government — aren't impressed.
NPR

Tea-Infused Sweets: Chocolate + Jasmine Tea Is A Match Made In Heaven

Smoky and floral brews can provide a kick of flavor to desserts, especially when blended with chocolate. Pastry chef Naomi Gallego shows us a few tricks for surprising the palate with tea.
WAMU 88.5

America's First Ladies

They walk a tricky line: closest adviser to the President of the United States and hostess in chief. A new book examines the evolution of the role of first lady of the United States.

WAMU 88.5

E-Cigarettes and Vaping

Last week, the D.C. Council voted to designate e-cigarettes and "similar vapor products containing nicotine" as tobacco products. That means that their sales tax will jump from the regular 5.75% sales tax to the 70% tax that's tacked onto sales of products like cigarettes and cigars. We explore what this means for the evolving public health debate surrounding e-cigarettes.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.