Staying safe in the summer heat

Hydration and sunscreen key while playing sports


Lex Lee

Eighth-grader Guinevere Lee tries to stay hydrated May 12. Guinevere Lee is a middle schooler participating in high school track.

Aidan Shafton

When playing spring sports, people like me often get so sucked into the competitive nature of the sport they are playing, that they forget about the danger of the heat. They forget to apply and reapply sunscreen and to drink water, which could have very dangerous effects.

For ultimate frisbee players like me, there are tournaments where you are playing in 80+ degree weather for 8 hours straight for two days in a row. If you don’t apply and reapply sunscreen — which I’m guilty of — the sunburn is painful. Although the tan is nice, the sunburn can last for days and hurts a lot after the tournament.

Recently my ultimate frisbee team had a two day tournament where I had made the mistake of not putting on sunscreen the entire first day of the tournament. My face was scorching red just hours after the tournament and it hurt to put soap on in the shower. It was a rough couple of days and I found myself wishing I could go back to tell myself to take the 15 seconds to apply sunscreen so I could avoid all the trouble.

On a more serious note, sunburn can lead to skin cancer later in life. Taking the short time to apply sunscreen before a game or a tournament can end up saving your life in the future. I know for sure I won’t make the mistake of not applying sunscreen at any more games in the future.

Another extremely important thing to do in order to stay safe in the heat while playing your sport is to hydrate. My team has a motto “hydrate or diedrate” in order to motivate each other to hydrate at games. While the motto may seem dark and threatening, it’s a fun way the team bonds and stays safe at games.

I would recommend that every team has their own fun way of motivating hydration. Not hydrating at hot games can be extremely dangerous and making it fun could save someone from a trip to the hospital. 

From sunscreen to hydration, staying safe in the heat while playing sports is key to your future health and wellness. It doesn’t take much time at all, and it could end up saving your life.