May 17th, 2013

Health N

Staff Report

Health N
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Louisville Orthopaedic Clinic shares hydration information

As a part of the Louisville Orthopaedic Clinic, the Sports Rehab Team physical therapists are knowledgeable and trained in the latest advancements and techniques available in sports rehabilitation. 

On a weekly basis, the Health N’ Sports Update will give information on prevention, recovery, and include special offers, as well as general health tips that would be beneficial to all. If there is a specific topic you’d like to know or hear more about, email future suggestions to

As the temperatures warm up and we take our activities outside, one key component to your workout is H20.  Our bodies are made up of about 60% water, and every system depends on water. Water is important for healthy skin, hair, and nails, as well as controlling body temperature, heart rate, and blood pressure.  There are many stories in the news of youth dying from dehydration during practices or games each year.  Staying hydrated, especially in our area where the heat index can get extremely high is important.

Effects of Dehydration

Typically, in a day, it's recommended that you drink at least eight 8 fl oz. of water.  During your workout, drinking 13-32 fl oz. of water should be taken in, by drinking small 3-8 fl oz. every 15 minutes or 8-11 fl oz. every 20 minutes.  Workouts lasting more than an hour should include a fluid that has a mixture of electrolytes and carbohydrates.  The addition of carbohydrates helps to enhance blood glucose concentration, which helps in preserving muscle glycogen levels.  This preservation of muscle glycogen levels plays a role in warding off muscular fatigue.  Minimal dehydration, even by 1% of body weight can increase stress on the cardiovascular system and limit the ability of the body to transfer heat from the musculo-skeletal system to the skin, also known as sweat.  This increases your risk of developing a heat related injury.  

How to Tell If You Are Dehydrated

So how do you know if you're dehydrated?  If you're thirsty going into the workout, you are already behind the curve and dehydrated. Another easy way to check if you're dehydrated is the color of your urine.  When you wake up in the morning, weigh yourself after your first bathroom visit.  If you are 2 lbs. lighter than the day before, you are most likely dehydrated.  If it's dark, you are dehydrated. Consuming the eight 8 fl oz. of water should be part of your overall workout out regimen.  Many take a pre workout drink, so make water your pre-pre workout drink to ward off dehydration.  The U.S. Military published a revised fluid replacement guideline as well as the American College of Sports Medicine, which are excellent resources on fluid replenishment. 

Strategies to Up Your Consumption

There are many excuses why people don't get their daily water consumption in.  Excuses range from "water is boring," to "not enough time," and so on. One strategy to meet your daily water intake, as well as getting your daily nutritional value in for foods, is by getting your water through the consumption of fruits!  Watermelon is 90% water, so it ranks highest on the list. Oranges, grapefruit, and melons like cantaloupe and honeydew are also excellent sources.  You're also getting that good sustainable energy of glucose and vitamins that will carry you further than the pre-workout drinks or can of "insert any energy drink."  Other strategies for getting your water intake up are adding a slice of lemon or orange to your water.  Other helpful strategies in maintaining proper hydration levels are:

1.  After a restroom break, stop by the water fountain or water cooler and have a drink.

2.  Before each meal, have one glass of water.

3.  Keep a large water bottle handy in your backpack or desk area.

4.  Apps!   We have apps for everything, even for water consumption!

Water is an Integral Part of Upping Your Game

Hydration is probably right up there with stretching as for being the least glamorous part of staying healthy.  It's not a 225 lb. bench press, achieving a 315 lb. squat or a sub 6 minute mile.  However, to achieve these types of mile stones you have to stay on top of your water consumption, or you could find yourself fatiguing quicker, cramping or worse, making a trip to the ER due to heat stress related issues.

-Tommy Board, PTA-

Louisville Orthopaedic Clinic & Sports Rehab Center

Main Office: 502-897-1794

Physical Therapy: 502-897-1790


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