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Jessica OrbonAug 2, 2017, 7:49 pm

Trainers, HS sports officials stress importance of keeping student athletes safe in extreme heat

New Jersey was the first state to use NAtional Athletic Trains Association protocols to prevent heat stroke in young athletes

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State Senator Patrick Diegnan, along with athletic trainers and high school sports officials held a press conference Wednesday to stress the importance of keeping student athletes safe while practicing outdoors during extreme heat.

As pre-season begins for young athletes, Sen. Diegnan has put forth and initiative in the hopes of making coaches and trainers aware of the harmful effects of heat illness.

In 2011, New Jersey was the first state to utilize protocols by the National Athletic Trainers Association when it comes to preventing heat stroke, and Diegnan says that since then, keeping those protocols in place and building on them has become one of his priorities.

"People love to knock our state, but when it comes to our kids, when it comes to education, when it comes to athletics, New Jersey's always been on the forefront," Diegnan said.

Officials are now taking precautions a step further, using the web bulb globe temperature device, something trainers say can potentially save lives. The device provides a real-time reading of the temperature on the field and allows coaches and athletic trainers to make modifications, or even cancel practice if heat conditions are too extreme.

Athletic trainers say that preventing heat-related illness is as simple as staying hydrated and hydrating 4 hours before practicing outdoors, eating healthy, and getting enough sleep.

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