Softball is a summer sport and it is therefore inevitable some games will be scheduled for play during extreme heat conditions.
High intensity exercise in a hot environment, with associated fluid loss and elevated body temperature, can lead to dehydration, heat exhaustion and heat stroke.
Each association/league is permitted to implement an extreme weather policy or work on a case by case basis.
The following information is a series of recommendations for teams to take when playing/practicing in extreme heat conditions and is based on the Hot Weather Guidelines implemented by Softball Australia.
Recommended Preventative Strategies:
- Drink at least 500mls (2-3 glasses) before an activity.
- Drink 200mls (1-2 glasses) every 15 minutes during activity, preferably water; however, diluted cordial or sports drinks may be appropriate.
- Drink at least 500mls after an activity.
Timing of games and training
- Where possible, avoid scheduling training and matches during the hottest part of the day (usually between 11am and 3pm, or noon and 4pm during daylight saving time).
- Early morning or night games minimize the likelihood of unacceptable playing conditions.
Player rest and rotation
- Consider using substitutions more often during play.
- Ensure all dugouts are equipped with shade and fluids for appropriate rest, recovery and hydration when a team is batting.
- Team managers and coaches should be especially vigilant and monitor players’ physical condition in extreme temperatures.
- It is essential that everyone is made aware of the importance of:
- Wearing appropriate clothing during play
- Wearing hats or visors whilst on the field
- Appropriate application and re-application of SPF 30+ sunscreen
- The use of wet towels
Stay safe, Stay Hydrated, and Have Fun!