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The time has finally arrived when the athletic teams from Mountain Valey and Dirigo are busy in an an effort to prepare for their respective fall seasons. The student-athletes assembled at designated practice areas on Monday morning to endure preseason drills.
A majority of the teams will conduct two-a-days, meaning practices are currently being held 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 4-6 p.m. each day. These are held annually for several reasons, including developing techniques, working together as a unit, creating team bonding and physical condioning.
The latter has become extremely important, based on the publicity that it has received nationwide. This drew hightened attention following the deaths of two high school football players in Georgia earlier this month. These tragic events events were each attributed to the excessive heat wave that has effected the southern part of the United States. The heat is not as sweltering throughout the area, but never-the-less proper steps have been put in place for the safety of the student-athletes.
”Probably the biggest area of concern this time of year is heat and hydration,” said Aaron Perreault, who is the athletic trainer for RSU 10. “With some kids coming into preseason with limited or no workout routine throughout the summer, they really need to be aware of the high heat and humidity that we usually see at the end of the month. Proper hydration is essential and there needs to be a good mixture between water and sports drinks.” Perrault said drinking plenty of water throughout the day and night and then supplementing with a sports drink during workouts. You should never just consume sports drinks. A proper balance will also help with cramping issues that may arise from the increased heat and loss of electrolytes.
Signs of heat illness include fatigue, nausea, headache, confusion, fainting, dizziness, and or cold clammy skin. Heat illness is a serious problem. Removal from exercise and cooling down of the body should be done immediately. Another major concern is the increased number of concussions that have been recorded. RSU 10 is continuing to work with the Maine Concussion Management Initiative and are continuing to take a proactive approach to this issue. The first couple weeks of preseason will be used to test the student athletes that are not currently in our database using the impact program.
“We will hold these baseline test in our database in the event an athlete sustains a concussion,” said Perreault. “We can then retest as needed until the athlete is back to baseline levels before they return to play. Impact is the most validated computerized concussion evaluation.”
The Dirigo football team will be anxious to test their wares in a coaches scrimmage at Mountain Valley at 4 p.m. on Aug. 25.
“Summer went great,” said first-year coach Dave Crutchfield. “Our coaches have been preparing for the season by meeting regularly each week; familiarizing with the play book, talking about expectations, and setting goals. We’re hoping for a roster of 40.”
There are no major changes planned at Dirigo - except for Friday night football, scrimmage against Fryeburg on 26 and home opener against Freeport on September 2. There are two boys and two girls soccer games under the lights, including MV on Sept. 14 and 15.