With high heat warnings taking place in many parts of the country, or whenever temperature and humidity levels rise above normal, it is important to follow guidelines to ensure that everyone is safe when playing outdoors.
Check out the seven tips below for ways to stay cool during these hot soccer months:
1. Allow for stoppages and delays of game for the purposes of proper hydration and player substitutions.
2. Consider notifying families at least 24 hours in advance to allow for proper hydration before the game even begins.
3. Make sure that the kids are wearing sunscreen and have plenty on hand in case a parent forgets.
4. Try to add shade to your venue by utilizing tents, trees and buildings to allow spectators to have a cool place to watch.
5. Shorten matches if the weather worsens throughout the day.
6. When possible, try to schedule games during the cooler times of the day such as mornings and evenings. If players play more than one game per day, allow for at least two hours between games and no more than two games per day.
7. Consider bringing damp/wet wash cloths in a cooler to the field for players to place on their necks during breaks. This technique has been known to provide great relief in the heat.
Remember that incidents of dehydration, heat exhaustion, heatstroke and sunburn are avoidable. Be prepared for those hot days and keep your players safe.