In 2009, the National Athletic Trainers' Association (NATA) issued a set of high school-specific pre-season heat- acclimatization guidelines as part of its ongoing effort to reduce the number of heat-related athletic injuries in secondary schools. The guidelines have been adopted in seventeen states and are being considered by many others.
For most exercising athletes, the ideal fluid for pre-hydration and re-hydration is water. Water is quickly absorbed, well-tolerated, an excellent thirst quencher, and cost effective. Sports drinks containing 6-8% carbohydrates and
sodium may be beneficial in some situations and for some individuals.
When the heat index is above 95 degrees, athletes, especially children, are at increased risk of heat-related illness. Cancelling or modifying practices and games, or taking others to reduce the risk of heat illness, should be taken.
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has developed a heat index chart parents and coaches can use to determine when heat and humidity have reached the point where athletes are at serious risk of heat illnesses, such as heat cramps, heat exhaustion or even heat stroke.