Heat and Athletes

Key points

  • People who exercise in extreme heat are more likely to become dehydrated and get heat-related illness.
  • Take steps to protect your health and the health of others during extreme heat.
  • If you feel faint or weak, STOP all activity and get to a cool place.

Stay safe during extreme heat

Group of teenage girl athletes sitting on the grass wearing green soccer jerseys while one is holding a soccer ball.
Take steps to protect your health during extreme heat.

If you plan to exercise while it's hot outside:

  • Limit outdoor activity, especially during the middle of the day when the sun is hottest.
  • Wear and reapply sunscreen as indicated on the package.
  • Schedule workouts and practices earlier or later in the day when the temperature is cooler.
  • Pace activity. Start activities slow and pick up the pace gradually.
  • Drink more water than usual, and don't wait until you're thirsty to drink more. Muscle cramping may be an early sign of heat-related illness.
  • Monitor a teammate's condition, and have someone do the same for you.
  • Wear loose, lightweight, light-colored clothing.
  • Follow additional tips on how to prevent heat-related illness.


If you feel faint or weak, STOP all activity and get to a cool place.

Learn how to spot heat-related illness.


Heat-related illness in athletes can be prevented if coaches and athletes are properly educated about heat safety. Provided below are links to resources states are using to support this effort. In addition, we have provided links to two heat-related illness courses and a study on the effectiveness of heat acclimatization guidelines.

State Heat Resources for Athletes




New York

North Carolina



Heat Illness Prevention Resources

Heat Illness Prevention Courses