49ers prioritizing elevation cheer for Mexico City game originally appeared on NBC Sports Bayarea
AIR FORCE ACADEMY, Colo. — Practice conditions Thursday afternoon might have been uncomfortable, but 49ers coach Kyle Shanahan defended the team’s decision to practice at high altitude this week.
“The cold is kind of a pain, and I don’t like being cold, but it didn’t change practices,” Shanahan said after the 49ers practiced for two hours in 20-degree weather.
“It has been no different so far. It all depends on the altitude, which they say helps us. Let’s hope that will be the case.
The 49ers practice outside of Colorado Springs, Colorado at 6,700 feet above sea level. The team plays Monday night against the Arizona Cardinals Monday night at the Estadio Azteca (home stadium). Aztec), located 7,200 feet above sea level.
However, the climate in which the 49ers are preparing for the game is very different from the temptations expected in the 60s and 70s.
When the 49ers first hit the practice field, it was 20 degrees.
Deebo Samuel and Ray-Ray McCloud tried to stay warm as long as possible, hiding in the toilets during an early part of training that didn’t require their presence.
A few wide receivers seemed reluctant to catch high-speed passes during warmups.
“It’s tough,” 49ers wide receiver Brandon Aiyuk said. “The bullets are heavy. Your hands are cold, frozen. It was hard.
Linebacker Fred Warner said the conditions made it difficult to stay focused on the work needed to prepare to face the Cardinals.
“We are all human. Do we want to be here practicing in 20 degree weather, running around? Probably not,” Warner said.
“But ultimately it’s a test of your discipline and your willingness to be on top of your mission and be different in a way that you won’t let the elements get to you.”
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Warner said he felt the team had a top-notch workout despite the freezing weather.
With snow expected for Thursday night, Shanahan said he may move Friday’s practice to an artificial-surface indoor facility.
“We are not worried about the cold. It’s about the pitch,” Shanahan said. “If it’s snowing and there’s a problem with the pitch, we’ll go inside.
“But we’re not going to go inside and practice on the grass because you’re cold. We will (only) train on grass because the ground is not safe.
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