(WMC-TV) - The dog days of summer are here and as the next school year quickly approaches, students involved in fall sports have already started practicing.
The Arlington High School band is feeling the effects of the scorching heat outside. The temps were so high that it forced band members to head indoors.
"If it's a warm day like today, we take water breaks every 30 minutes to 45 minutes and we allow the kids time to relax," said Phillip Hughes, the school's band director.
Band members usually practice outdoors from 8 a.m. until 11:45 a.m. when they leave for lunch, but when it gets too hot they head inside.
"If the (heat) index starts pushing at 100, then we start moving inside," said Hughes. "The magic number is 103."
From 1:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m., the band heads inside so they continue practice, but avoid the hottest part of the day.
With the pounding of feet, heavy band equipment and lots of movement on the field, students can easily work up a sweat. In fact, the school has a sprinkler on hand to help keep them cool.
Hughes says because heat exhaustion can set in quickly, he reminds students to drink at least 12 ounces of water before practice begins.
"We stay away from the high sugar items, things that have caffeine," Hughes said.
Parents are also on campus to help monitor students and watch for signs of heat exhaustion.