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                               Hydration Tips – Preparation For Competing On Hot And Humid Days

Thirst is not a good indicator of your level of hydration. The wisdom behind the saying lies in the fact that by the time you are feeling thirsty, you are already past the point of being adequately hydrated. If you don’t hydrate more than two hours in advance of your workout, race, game or other event, you will be dehydrated during your event regardless of how much you drink within the two hours prior. You should drink plenty of water all day and then taper off your fluid intake during those last two hours. The water you drink right before your event will not have enough time to hydrate your body, and will only make you have to run to the restroom more than you would otherwise.


BACKGROUND 
  • Experts believe that as little as a 1-2% decrease in the body’s fluid levels can be enough to negatively affect performance through a drop in energy levels, decision-making and your body’s ability to cool-down.
  • Prolonged dehydration in hot and/or humid conditions may increase risk of heat stress
DAYS LEADING UP TO TOURNAMENT
  • Aim for 3L of water on each of the 2 days prior to the game
  • Consider adding salt to food and electrolyte formula (i.e. Gatorade, etc.) to drinks if it is very hot/humid
  • I hope I don't need to really say this but No alcohol (this info is for when you get much older and are still playing), a known diuretic
  • Use urine color to check hydration status
  • Clear urine = good hydration
  • Dark yellow urine = dehydration
GAME DAY
  • Upon waking have 1-2 glasses of water
  • Over the course of the morning aim to drink 4-6 glasses of fluid (water or sports drink best). If you suffer badly from cramps add some salt or electrolyte formula to drinks
DURING THE GAME
  • Look for all opportunities to ingest fluids
  • Add extra scheduled breaks
  • Water or sports drinks are recommended
  • Look for every opportunity to cool down
  • Use of ice vests/cooling fans where possible
  • Recover in shade where possible
  • Be aware of heat stress
  • If you show signs of heat illness (exhaustion, cramps, dizziness or collapse) seek immediate medical support
POST-GAME
  • Weigh yourself after game to measure fluid loss
  • 1kg weight loss = 1L fluid loss. Aim to drink 1.5 x fluid lost in the 4-6 hours afterward (water or sports drink best)