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We’ve all heard how important it is to drink plenty of water before, during and after exercise, but have you ever stopped to think about how large of a role hydration plays in ensuring that an athlete is able to perform at their peak level? We’ve gathered some helpful info from the National Athletic Trainers’ Association that will make you want to fill up your favorite water bottle!
In order to stay properly hydrated, how much water should be consumed and when? To answer the first part of this question, it is important to take into consideration a person’s body size, metabolism, activity level, what kinds of foods they eat and external factors, such as weather. Athletes must gauge how much water they require to perform their daily functions and how much additional water they must drink during physical activity.
What happens if an athlete fails to stay properly hydrated during periods of activity? Dehydration, which is defined as decrease of 2% in body weight, can have a negative impact on an athlete’s performance. If an athlete feels thirsty, has dark urine or notices a significant drop in body weight from the day before, they may be experiencing dehydration. Additional signs to look for include headache, weakness, dizziness, muscle cramps, nausea, irritability and decreased performance.
Want to learn more about the importance of hydration in athletes? Click here to read the full article from the National Athletic Trainers’ Association.
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