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Marching band kids at risk from heat illness

Drum majors direct the band as the Redcoat Marching Band perform. (Photo by Andrew Davis Tucker/UGA)

It’s not just student-athletes who need guidelines for heat protection during practice. This time of year, you hear a lot about heat-related illnesses in athletes. Thousands of student-athletes are sidelined by heat illnesses each year, and some don’t recover. But while guidelines exist to help coaches and trainers keep their students safe, there’s another group on the field that’s still at risk: students in marching bands. Research led by Dr. Andrew Grundstein and an undergraduate student in the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, Rashawn Merchant, shows that of band members suffering heat-related illnesses from 1990 to 2020, almost 400 band students who overexerted themselves became ill due to heat exposure. Because the study relied on data from news reports, the number of total cases is likely an underestimate. For more on the story, take a look at the link below.

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