Staying Hydrated During the Summer Months!
It’s May! That means days will be starting to heat up as we get into those summer months! Just because the Summer Season doesn’t begin until June doesn’t mean that days will be staying cool. Over the last week days have gone up into the 90’s. Summer is upon us! That also means that summer sports camps, outside play, and leagues will be in full swing! What is everyone’s main concern during these summer months besides loads of Sunscreen?
That’s right! Keeping your youth athlete hydrated and protected from heat induced illnesses!
Typically, there are 4 ways that fluids get lost (True Sport) that can cause dehydration:
- Exercise Intensity: There are a wide range of sports, from sprinting to long endurance runners. What type of sport your child participates in determines how much more water they need to be drinking especially, if they are sweating more!
- Sweating: Sweat comes from increased body temperature and heart rate, its your bodies way of trying to cool itself off. Everyone sweats differently, some sweat more than others.
- Temperature: as the days start to heat up and get hotter, kids participating in outdoor sports will start to sweat more due to temperature.
- Altitude: While training at a higher altitude is better for the body, there is increased risks of dehydration if not monitored.
But, there are ways to prevent dehydration from occuring! Generally, a good rule of thumb would be to drink half your body weigh.
- 200 lb person x 0.5 = 100 oz of water
- 86 lb person x 0.5 = 43 oz of water
For days, that are high activity days, such as practice or camp days you will want to get your kids prepared by drinking water before, during, and after to make up for what could be lost!
According to True Sport, below is the amount of water that kids should drink before, during, and after participating in physical activity.
- Before: 16 ounces of water should be drank about 2 hours before activity begins, and another 8-16 ounces right before activity.
- During: Every 15-20 minutes, drink at least 4-6 ounces of fluid during vigorous exercise. For less vigorous exercise, decrease the amount slightly.
- After: Drink 16-24 ounces of water for every pound lost during physical activity. Consuming rehydrating beverages (like fruit smoothies) and eating watery foods (such as fruits and vegetables) along with salty ones can help replace lost fluids and electrolytes.
A simpler way for most athletes (or anyone) to drink enough water is to remember the Rule of 8: eight times throughout the day, drink a big glass of water (eight total).
Youth Sports — Making it Safe in the Heat by Michael F. Bergeron, Ph.D., FACSM.
Youth Sports Hydration Guide by Brandon Capaletti
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