High schools open football practice in triple-digit heat

LIBERTY HILL (KXAN) — A number of area high schools started football practice on Monday, and they’re having to get ready for the season in triple-digit heat.

But for the boys of fall, practicing in the heat of summer is nothing new, and they know they know to how to come in prepared.

“I think it’s important that they come in in shape and be used to the heat, used to the sun,” Liberty Hill head coach Jerry Vance said.

The UIL also has implemented rules to help keep athletes safe. Every athlete must go through a four-day acclimation period where they don’t wear any pads with the exception of a helmet. Teams aren’t allowed to have two-a-days during the acclimation period, either.

Once they’re in full pads, though, teams are allowed to hold two-a-days but not on consecutive days, and there must be at least a two hour break between the two practices.

Also, no practice is allowed to be longer than three hours, with no more than five hours of practice in a single day when teams are going through two-a-days.

“We give them plenty of water, a lot of gatorade,” Vance said. “We take a lot of breaks. I don’t think we go longer than 20 minutes that we don’t take a five minute break. We keep our kids refreshed, we keep everything going.”

Class 6A and 5A teams that didn’t go through spring practice were allowed to start on Monday, along with all 4A through 1A schools. Big schools that did do spring drills start on the 10th.

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