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History was made this week with PGA TOUR Caddies wearing shorts at the John Deere Classic for a first time policy change in the PGA TOURs 83-year history. This is the first week of a three-week test program that will be reviewed by the PGA TOUR. More important the quality of life for caddies was improved and working conditions upgraded. The PCA and all its members want to thank the PGA TOUR and the PGA TOUR Tournament Directors for its commitment of improve the life of caddies on TOUR. But it is not only about shorts -------Please read on to get the inside from the PCA. The Caddies would value your thoughts.

At the 1997 PGA Directors meeting on Hilton Head the PCA had the first caddie association booth and introduced the PCA Cooling Stations similar to the ones used on the sidelines by the NFL to be available to the players, caddies and volunteers at drink stations on the tee. This information was mailed out throughout the year and the PCA has lobbied for changes in other areas when the heat index reaches above 98 degrees. During the 1998 PGA TOUR Tournaments Association meeting PCA was able to deliver a package containing information on the Association and the products and services that were available to the tournament directors for the 1999 season.

THE TIME IS NOW! The is addressing these issues with the PGA TOUR and PGA TOUR Directors and received positive response. On Friday the PCA Cooling Stations were available at the John Deere Classic for use at the event on every other hole. A survey will be taken as to the benefit of this product during the event; the results will be published in a report within the month. Any interested parties, who have in put, research or articles on how the body reacts in extreme heat and what it takes to maintain and recover Please contact the e-mail the PCA at their site with your comments.

The PCA Worldwide plans to discuss this and other issues when extreme heat conditions are present at TOUR events. WHEN THE HEAT INDEX GETS OVER 98 Degrees GOLF TOURNAMENTS MAY WANT TO LOOK THESE HEALTH RELATED ISSUES ALSO.
1. Lighter Bags 25# limit.
2. Before you loop, hydration required for caddies.
3. Foods and drinks to replace electrolytes and potassium loss.
4. Light colored and mesh or no bibs.
5. Special PCA Climate Clothes. (designed to cool the body)
6. Special sunscreens and cancer preventing head gear.
7. PCA Cooling Stations.
8. Provisions for inclement weather and lightening

We are collecting and preparing a report for interested parties from doctors, nutritionists, writers and respected individuals and companies addressing these issues. We would appreciate any information and articles you may have that can aid us in the very important project. Please contact us ASAP. We all must do our part to help save the tradition of caddying.

Contact us for more information on The PCA Personal, Portable Air Cooler! Refreshing ultra-fine mist keeps you cool anywhere you go! Cools the air up to 30°. Available in 2 sizes: 16 oz. or 24 oz. models Weighs as little as 2lbs. When filled. Straps comfortably around the waist or over the shoulder. Easy to use! Simply unscrew the cap, revealing the large mouth water bottle. Fill with water and pump it up! Built-in pump pressurizes the system. No Batteries, No Motors! Lasts for hours! Insulated tank keeps water cold for hours. Lasts up to 3 hours. Perfect for dry or humid climates. Includes 3 feet of flexible tube with clip for attaching to hat, or whatever for hands free use! 16 oz. model fits on golf cart our on your waist. Perfect for: Golf, Walking, Fishing Hiking, Boating, Construction or anywhere, anytime you are HOT!

Top Sports News Tue, 06 Jul 1999, 10:51pm EDT

Caddie Group Founder Pushes for Changes After Caddie Collapses
By Michael Buteau
Orlando, Florida, July 6 (Bloomberg)

-- A professional caddie group wants the PGA Tour to improve on-course working conditions after one of its members collapsed during the third round of the Western Open on Saturday. Caddies should have the option of wearing shorts and carrying lighter bags on days when the heat index, a gauge of temperature and humidity, rises above 98 degrees, said Dennis Cone, founder of the Orlando, Florida-based Professional Caddies Association Worldwide.

``Weather is not the way it used to be and we need to be able to adjust to the changes,'' Cone said. On Saturday, Garland Dempsey, who caddies for PGA Tour player John Maginnes, collapsed after his heart stopped while he was walking off the 15th tee. While the exact cause hasn't been determined, the temperature in Chicago reached 93 on Saturday and the heat index hit 106. He's listed in fair condition at a Chicago-area hospital.

Dempsey, 51, had also reportedly been taking medication for his pancreas and gallbladder.

It was the second consecutive year a caddie collapsed during the Western Open in Lemont, Illinois. Last year, a caddie for Greg Kraft suffered heat stroke in the third round. He was able to continue after being treated with intravenous fluids. Since the caddie association's inception in 1996, Cone has lobbied the PGA Tour to change a rule requiring caddies to wear long pants at its events.

The U.S. Golf Association has allowed caddies to wear shorts at its U.S. Open for the past three years. ``We need to worry about the health of the caddies rather than just saying `well, this is the way that it has always been done,''' Cone said.

The PGA Tour said its rule has the backing of its golfers. ``The players have asked us to maintain the long pants rule as an important part of the professional image of our sport,'' said Bob Combs, a PGA Tour spokesman.

The PGA Tour has recommended that tournament directors allow caddies to wear lightweight mesh bibs during events. They've also been told to make bibs optional when a heat advisory is issued. Like at most PGA Tour events, Dempsey and other caddies wore dark-colored cotton bibs during the Western Open. Cone said a light-colored bib could help caddies keep cool.

Caddies had the option of not wearing the bibs on Sunday after a heat advisory was issued. Sunday's heat index reached 106. There was no heat advisory issued before play began on Saturday.

After watching two caddies collapse at his event, Greg McLaughlin, tournament director for the Western Open, said the PGA Tour needs to reevaluate its policies, particularly when it comes to shorts.

``I personally don't think it looks good when the caddies wear shorts, but I think the Tour has to reconsider in extreme situations,'' he said.

Cone has also suggested to PGA Tour officials that players be required to lighten their bags, which often weigh as much as 50 pounds, on hot days.

``There are players whose wives carry the light bags, so we know it's not a big deal not to have that big bag,'' he said. Golf bags used by professionals are larger than usual due to the amount of equipment and accessories needed. Sponsors, who pay players to use bags with logos on them, also prefer the larger bags. (c)1999 Bloomberg L.P. All rights reserved.
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