Pre-season Practice – Fall

Long Day / Short Day

South Carolina High School Fall Sports Pre-Season Practice Plan

(Endorsed by SCATA, Ad Hoc SCHSL Preseason Acclimatization Committee)

BACKGROUND: In the summer of 2009 the Inter-association Task Force for Preseason Secondary School Athletics recommended preseason heat-acclimatization guidelines for secondary school athletic programs to minimize the risk of heat illness during preseason football practice.

PURPOSE: The intent of the following “exposure-based proposal” is to promote an acclimatization and recovery model for SCHSL Fall sports consistent with the Inter-association Task Force guidelines that also allows coaches to appropriately prepare their teams and fits into the current SCHSL’s schedule.


  • Days 1-5: 3 hours of Practice
  • Day 6-14: Must alternate days Long Practice Day and Short Practice Day

o Long Day: 5 hours of practice permitted

  • Divide the time to best benefit your program
  • Practices must be separated by 2-hours of continuous rest
  • Long Day can follow a Rest Day (even if the day before the Rest Day was Long Day)

o Short Day: 3 hours of practice permitted

  • Divide the time to best benefit your program
  • Day 15+No Restrictions on Practice


  • First practice permitted: Friday, July 28, 2023.
  • Practice times (including warm-up, stretching, cool-down time, conditioning) shall not exceed 3 hours.
  • All practices occurring Days 1-14 must be documented to show compliance.
  • All athletes must complete Days 1 -5 of the practice timeline before being allowed to participate in more than 3 hours of practice in a day.
  • Weight room activities do not count as practice time, but must be separated from practice by at least 2 hours of continuous rest to allow for recovery.

o Exception: No continuous rest period is required if weight room activities are counted as a part of the day’s allotted practice time.

  • A Walk-through is allowed and does not count against practice time. Walk-through is defined as a teaching opportunity with athletes:

o not wearing protective equipment

o not using sports-related equipment

o participating in an indoor, climate-controlled environment.

  • Must have a Rest Day after 6 consecutive practice days.
  • Scrimmages permitted on either a Long Day or Short Day. A scrimmage will count as 3 hours.
  • All athletes must have a pre-participation physical exam before athletic participation.
  • If weather/lightning postpones practice in progress, the practice may resume after a warm-up (20 minute maximum) and the remainder of allotted practice time may be completed.

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