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Athletes take precautions to stay safe in the summer heat

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STRUTHERS, Ohio - The week of heat isn't stopping some from still enjoying the summer. However, for athletes, the heat could cause serious complications.

"I've been waiting for the heat to come in, but now with football practice, I'm kind of wishing it would go down," says Springfield resident Nick Wells.

In 2001 NFL tackle Korey Stringer of Warren died of complications from a heat stroke during training camp.

Now, new precautions are taken to protect young athletes while pushing their physical limits during the hottest days of the year.

During summer practices, the baseball players are braving the sweltering 90 degree heat in full uniform for hours at a time at Cene Park in Struthers.

In order to keep up their energy and the strength, they're staying hydrated with plenty of ice cold water in the dug out.

"Yesterday I did a game, same time as today, with my umpire equipment on. I must have rank about five or six bottles of water," says Tony Swindler of Liberty.

Boys involved in fall sports are conditioning by working out early in the day, before the sun's heat is too intense.

"Certainly as a coach you're looking at the amount of time they're spending on the field. When it gets this hot and you're looking for signs of a heat stroke or heat exhaustion in kids, you're not pushing them further than they can handle," says Canfield Head Football Coach Mike Pavlansky.

Coaches and trainers say in this heat, it is important to acclimate young people by building up to more intense practices in August.

Bryan Kristan, a junior at Canfield High School, is working on perfecting his skills as a kicker.

"Sometimes you have to stop, you have to push through a little bit, but you certainly have to know your limits," says Kristan.

Kristan is training with Canfield Alum Billy Fisher. He is working to showcase his football talent at the United States Military Academy at West Point.

"You've got to listen to your body in situations like this when the heat can just get you all of a sudden," says Fisher.

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