A Creative Solution for Hydrating AthletesUsing coolers for outdoors sports is a standard idea which can pose unique problems. For example, where can it be positioned so as not to take a seat on the bench, be on the ground making cups/bottles difficult to fill or get caught in the dust and dirt common to dugouts?
At a local hardware store, I purchased two standard rafter hangers. These are designed to go over the top of a 2”x 4” rafter beam and provide an arm for hanging items such as bicycles. Each hanger cost less than two dollars.
Sports such as baseball, softball, track and lacrosse commonly have fences around the field, in front of the dugout, or behind the bench. A very simple and inexpensive method to facilitate safety and ease of operation is to hang the cooler on the top rail of the fence (typically a 5-foot fence), on the fence itself or in the corner of the backstop.
Begin by positioning the cooler next to the fence. Place the longer arm into the handles of the cooler. By holding both the hanger and the handles of the cooler, lift the cooler up and place the hook end of the hanger onto the top rail of the fence. This places the spout at a very convenient level for the team to refill cups and bottles.
This idea can be used with coolers of all sizes. With handles across the top of smaller coolers, one hanger would suffice. First aid ice containers and first aid kits can be positioned in clear view with this simple hanger idea as well.
To improve hydration and replenishment for your athletes consider purchasing Gatorade, coolers and cup racks, and cups and bottles from www.esportshealth.com.
Phil Hossler, ATC has been an athletic trainer on the scholastic, collegiate and Olympic levels. He has authored 4 books and numerous articles and served as an officer in state and regional athletic training associations for 20 years. He is a member of four halls of fame including the National Athletic Trainers’ Association’s.