Adapting to the Heat


With the temperature in the mid 90s in Cincinnati at the start of the men's final, Alcarez didn't appear to be bothered by the sunshine heat. Noticeably though, Djokovic near the end of first set was succumbing to the heat, radiating from the bright sunshine heating the court to well above 100 degrees, and that heat, without much of breeze on Sunday afternoon, enveloped Djokovic. He said he felt on the fringe of having a heat stroke.

On the other hand, Alcarez appeared to remain fresh despite the heat. The young are far more adaptable. Still neither player has experienced much U.S. summertime heat., where the warmest recorded temperature of a normal summer day occurs between 4 p.m. and 5 p.m. However, that is somewhat misleading. Official temperatures are recorded by a thermometer measuring air temperature and the thermometer is placed in a shaded outdoor enclosure away from direct sunlight.

Here's when the heat is the hottest.

Recently I played tennis starting at 1:30 p.m. in Dallas, Texas, without a breath of a breeze and without a cloud in the sky. The scalding sun was straight overhead and seemed about 10 feet away from my scalp, like an iron set at the highest temperature placed on an ironing board.

On the way to the courts, the temperature recorded in my car read 105 degrees. Once on the concrete court, I placed a digital thermometer on the court under the searing-straight-down sunshine and the temperature read 137 degrees. Then just after I finished playing at about 4:30 p.m., the official temperature had risen to 111 degrees. Yet the court temperature had dropped to a mild 121 degrees with the sun lowered in the western sky and a tree on the west side slightly shading the court.

I've lived much of my life in the south U.S.A. I make sure I play a lot of outdoor tennis in the mid and late spring to better adapt to the inevitable torturous summertime heat without much breeze and no rain in sight for the next 60 days, a normal summertime weather forecast in Dallas.

A Dallas 95-degree summer day is felt as refreshingly cool.
Last edited: