AJC: Heat policy enacted to protect athletes

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Published on: 08/29/06

Macon — It may be enough to satisfy state lawmakers, but some medical experts hope the Georgia High School Association's new heat policy is only the first step.

The GHSA executive committee on Monday unanimously approved a statewide policy regulating athletic practices in hot weather. While the rule requires all schools to have a written policy for conducting practices during times of extreme heat and humidity, the schools will set their own policies. It also requires schools to have a scientifically approved instrument that measures heat and humidity at all practices.

Dr. Jon Hyman of the Atlanta Sports Medicine and Orthopedic Center said other factors need to be considered besides temperature and humidity. He said coaches need to measure the athlete's body mass in order to plan a safe practice for each athlete.

He also wonders how the GHSA's new policy will be enforced.

"Leaving it to each school to make their own policy is fine, as long as there is enforcement and adequate resources to initiate that policy," he said. "A policy is just words."  Full Story: Heat policy enacted to protect athletes

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