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Highlights and interviews from Tuesday’s high school football practices at Martin County and South Fork

Treasure Coast Newspapers

Martin County’s high school football teams were informed Thursday afternoon that they would not be able to take the field for practice while the district worked out trainer services.

Martin County High School’s officials Twitter account posted a message late Thursday afternoon saying the team would resume practice Friday.  The message also notes there is not a “trainer strike.”

Barry O’Rourke, who declined to comment, has been the county’s head athletic trainer the past 22 years.

No trainers have been present at football practices this week, the first week the Florida High School Athletic Association has allowed teams to have non-contact practices.

More: TCPalm PrepZone 2-a-Days: South Fork and Martin County

The FHSAA does not require trainers to be on site for practices, but “strongly recommends” one is present for games and practices where student-athletes are at risk for concussion or for collision sports. 

“We’ve had training services in place as long as I’ve been here and I’m sure much longer before that,” Martin County athletic director Mark Cowles said. “I’m not familiar with how the other offer processes have been, but we’re working through the process right now.”

Cowles said the decision to cancel Thursday’s practices was to make sure the coaches understood all the heat acclimatization policies without a trainer on site. 

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