Proper hydration is critical for athletes who want to feel and perform at their best.

Water is the easiest and most affordable way to hydrate.

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Hydration: Quick-Hitters

Hydrate with water during moderate activity of 60 minutes or less.
With more than 60 minutes of moderate activity, consider adding sports drinks to replace carbohydrates and electrolytes.
Drinking water with food helps hydration and absorption during recovery.

Hydration: The Basics

What does staying hydrated do for your body?

Proper hydration is critical for athletes who want to feel and perform at their best. Water is the easiest and most affordable way to hydrate.

Proper hydration:

  • Improves athletic performance and reduces recovery time
  • Helps every system in the body function better
  • Minimizes risk of injury and muscle cramping
  • Better regulates the body’s temperature, among many other benefits.

Conversely, when an athlete becomes dehydrated, they experience:

  • Headaches, fatigue, and loss of concentration
  • Joint and muscle pain
  • Muscle cramps
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Dizziness and weakness

And many other symptoms that can all compromise performance and impair cognitive functioning.

Hydration: Ambassador Story

Watch this Ambassador Story with Tyler Carter or read the lesson aloud.

Tyler Carter headshot.

Multi-time Paralympic alpine skier Tyler Carter has long days on the slopes. He tries to pay attention to how much water he consumes in a day and drinks water before he feels thirsty, especially during more intense practice or competition days. When he has really depleted himself in a workout or competition, he will drink sports drinks to replace the electrolytes and carbohydrates he lost. Tyler knows it is easy to forget to drink enough water during a long practice or competition day, especially when you’re having fun and not paying attention to your thirst, so he highly recommends athletes carry a water bottle with them through the day or keep their bottle in a location they will visit often throughout the day.

Water makes up 60 percent of a person’s body weight and every system in the body relies on water to function. Hydration is critical to optimal performance and successful athletes, like Tyler, understand the importance of hydration before, during, and after exercise. Water provides the easiest and most affordable means for hydration, while sports drinks can also help release electrolytes and carbohydrates.

If Tyler didn’t hydrate, he knows he would experience dehydration quickly. Dehydration is scientifically defined as a water deficit of 2-3 percent of a person’s body weight and occurs when the body is deprived of fluids resulting from sweating, illness, medication use, and neglecting to drink water. Dehydration can compromise performance and impair brain function. Food provides nearly 20 percent of a person’s total water intake, so for Tyler, getting in different fruits and vegetables like watermelon and tomatoes helps keep him hydrate!

TrueSport athletes take hydration very seriously and chose to drink the right fluids at the right time to hydrate for peak performance.

Ambassador Story Questions

1. What was the main point you took away from Jessica’s words?

2. Were you surprised to hear that swimmers like Jessica need to hydrate even though they are often in the water?

3. Besides your coach providing water breaks, how can you take responsibility for your own hydration while playing sports and in your normal everyday life?