Nearly 50Oc In UAE: Doctors, Coaches Warn Against Playing In Sun After Cricketer's Death

(MENAFN- Khaleej Times) Published: Sat 22 Jun 2024, 3:06 PM

Last updated: Sat 22 Jun 2024, 10:32 PM

Doctors and sports coaches in the UAE are urging residents to reconsider engaging in outdoor sports activities as temperatures soar close to 50oC .

On Thursday night, UAE resident and amateur cricketer Mandeep Singh passed away after playing a match. While forensic reports are yet to come in, his death has raised concerns about the health of athletes, particularly those participating in high-intensity sports like cricket and football.

Sports coaches are highlighting the risks associated with playing sports in heat and recommend postponing matches to after dusk.“Outdoor sports should be avoided during peak heat hours and activities be scheduled post 6pm when temperatures are relatively lower,” said Gopal Jaspara, a cricket coach at G Force Cricket Academy.

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“Playing sports in such harsh weather conditions is risky,” said Jaspara.“We advise all players to refrain from outdoor sports during the day time in summer months. It's crucial to understand that the consequences of heat exposure can be severe,” said Jaspara.

Gopal Jaspara

According to doctors, heat exhaustion is a serious condition that can lead to life-threatening consequences if not addressed promptly. Heat exhaustion can lead to heat stroke, and if not addressed promptly, it can lead to severe complications or death.

“Athletes are prone to heat exhaustion and the vital sign of it is they have difficulty continuing with exercise,” said Dr Ahmed Mohammed Abdelrazek Deabes, Specialist Internal Medicine, Burjeel Royal Hospital, Asharej, Al Ain.

“Avoid strenuous activities during the hottest parts of the day, and allow your body time to acclimate to hot weather before engaging in strenuous activities,” added Dr Deabes.

Grounds booked

According to a survey by Khaleej Times, cricket and football grounds are occupied from early morning until late evening on weekends and on weekdays, these grounds are booked from 6am to 11am and 4pm to 10pm.

Coaches said that a few years ago there were no slots for late afternoon, particularly from 5pm to 8pm, as there was minimal activity because of the soaring heat.“Now, slots are available from 4.30pm and a lot of youngsters are playing,” said Jaspara adding that they are shifting their coaching after 6pm now since the weather is so bad.“We will be playing indoors from July 1 onwards.”

Gustave Tarik, a Cameroonian personal trainer and fitness coach at 24 Fitness gym, said that many residents are underestimating the health risks of carrying out physical activities outside during summer.

“If you must exercise outdoors after 6pm, ensure the intensity of your activity is low; walking is fine. However, the best advice is to move all fitness activities, including sports, indoors. It's safer and more manageable in these extreme temperatures,” said Tarik.

Gustave Tarik

“People with kidney issues or cardiovascular problems should avoid working out outside at any time of the day. It's crucial for anyone exercising to stay well-hydrated and to consume electrolyte drinks regularly,” added Tarik.

In light of the recent incident, coaches are urging for a temporary break from outdoor sports. They recommend that players shift to indoor sports facilities for the next two months to avoid the extreme summer heat.“It's better to be safe than sorry,” said Tarik.“Indoor sports provide a safer alternative during the hotter months of the year.”

Lower price during the day

A few players who play regularly said that they rent sports grounds late in the evenings to avoid playing in the heat.

“As a regular player, I've noticed that renting fields during the day is significantly cheaper than at night. We usually rent the field only after sunset. For one match during the day, players pay about Dh40 per head. However, once the sun sets, the cost jumps to around Dh70 per head because of the additional expense for lighting the ground,” said Shawez (name changed), a cricketer and a resident of Al Mahatta in Sharjah.

“This price disparity is one of the main reasons why many still choose to play in the heat, despite the health risks,” added Shawez.

Address the symptoms fast

Meanwhile, another doctor, Dr Rahul Chaudhary, consultant cardiology and specialist interventional cardiologist at International Modern Hospital Dubai, spoke to Khaleej Times to raise awareness about knowing the symptoms of a possible impending heart attack.

Dr Rahul Chaudhary

He noted:“The symptoms of heart attack can range from just a feeling of uneasiness, chest tightness, chest heaviness, a pressure or a squeezing sensation in the chest, nausea, vomiting, unexplained cold sweats, giddiness, heartburn, any abnormal uncomfortable sensation between the angle of your mouth that is the lower jaw to above the umbilicus.

“What needs to be highlighted is the fact that if you experience any type of uneasiness which you have never experienced before in life that is a warning sign that is a red flag. Seek immediate healthcare attention,” Dr Chaudhary underscored.

The Indian expat who passed away on Thursday in Sharjah after playing cricket reportedly complained of uneasiness and shortness of breath . He then started gasping for breath and collapsed inside the car.

Dr Chaudhary noted:“Time is really very important. Addressing the earliest onset of symptom will give us the best shot to prevent fatal heart attack, as the window of opportunity may be very narrow when it actually happens.


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