High school football players practice in extreme heat

Coaches take prec­autions to keep players safe


SAN ANTONIO - Even though it's blistering hot outside, area high school football players have been busy practicing for a new season.

Some schools, including Antonian College Preparatory High School, are busy with football practice this week, even as temperatures soar past the hundred-degree mark.

"It's been pretty  hot," said quarterback Chad Tatum. "It's been over 100 (degrees) constantly almost every day, and we're out here almost in the middle of the day and that's when it starts getting hot and humid, so it's very very hot."

Keeping players safe in the heat is a big priority for Coach Van Fuschak.

"I think over the years, it's gotten hotter and you've got to be very cognizant of the heat," said Fuschak.

An intense football workout with the summer sun beating down could easily turn dangerous -- even deadly

A study by the University of North Carolina showed football players are 11 times more likely to suffer heat-related illness than all other high school sports combined.

Fuschak said the key to dealing with the heat is staying hydrated, so players are given plenty of water breaks throughout the day.

"I think as coaches, we have to be real smart about what we do in order to keep the kids hydrated and making sure they don't get overheated in that amount of time," he said.

"They're pretty lenient about water, so any time you want water, you can just stop and get some. They have a lot of different water stations everywhere," said Chad Tatum, Antonian quarterback.

After practice, players are given Gatorade to replenish electrolytes and they're encouraged to hydrate when they get home so they can be ready for another day of practice under the sizzling sun.

For a list of recent stories Eileen Gonzales has done, click here.


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