Current Clinical Concepts: Heat Tolerance Testing

J Athl Train. 2021 Nov 18. doi: 10.4085/1062-6050-352-21. Online ahead of print.


Heat tolerance testing (HTT) has been developed to assess readiness for work or exercise in the heat based on thermoregulation during exertion. Although the Israeli Defense Force protocol has been the most widely utilized and referenced, other protocols and variables considered in the interpretation of the test are emerging. Therefore, the purpose of this "Current Clinical Concepts" manuscript is to summarize the role of HTT following an exertional heat stroke (EHS), assess the validity of HTT, and to provide a review of best practice recommendations to guide clinicians, coaches and researchers in the performance, interpretation, and future direction of HTT. Furthermore, we will provide the strength of evidence for these recommendations using the Strength of Recommendation Taxonomy system.

Keywords: exertional heat stroke; heat intolerance; protocol considerations; return to activity; return to duty; return to play.