By Mervin Brass 

Heat 2

Athletes were encouraged to drink lots of water and stay out of the sun when they weren’t competing. Photo credit: Treaty 4 News.

(Ochapowace Nation) South East Treaty 4 archer Tristan Isaac just finished his round of targets and cools himself off in the shade with a bag of ice pressed against his neck. During his round, he felt the effects of the heat and humidity.

“I was getting sweat in my eyes, messing up my shots,” he says. “Blistering hot! Holee!”

Temperatures soared into the low 30s on day three of the First Nation Summer Games, causing some athletes problems with heat exhaustion and dehydration.

“It is very hot out there,” says Dale Obst of the Saskatchewan Archery Association. He says the 20 target course is long with lots of tree cover. “In there, you’re in the bush, in a tight confined area in the bush and the sweat is just pouring off of you.”

Obst says they have water stations on the course to help the athletes stay hydrated.

The hot weather was especially troubling for long distance runners in the track and field event with some unable to finish their races.

File Hills Qu’Appelle Tribal Council athletics coach Marcel Isnana says it’s important to provide good nutrition to the athletes in the extreme heat.

“We have a lot of things on hand such as oranges, bananas, nutrition bars and a lot of water,” says Isnana. “We stated to our athletes to stay hydrated well before they run.”

“We’ve had a fair number of casualties with severe headaches, throwing up and cramps,” says Audrey Isaac, the medical coordinator for the 2015 First Nation Summer Games. “We mentioned to the tribal councils to ensure that their athletes are drinking lots of water.”

Isaac says the warning is also for the parents, fans, coaches and other participants at the games.

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