Hydration on the Soccer Pitch

Whether it’s incredibly cold or scorching hot, staying hydrated before, during and after your soccer match is key.

Hydration is the replacement of body fluids lost by the body through the processes of sweating, exhaling and elimination.

Proper hydration not only quenches one’s thirst, it allows the body to flush toxins, maintain balance, and supports brain function and the integrity of muscles, joints and bones.

Water is the basis for life. It’s second only to oxygen in importance for health, making up to 75% of the body. Every cell depends on water to perform essential functions. Although water does not provide a source of calories, adequate hydration is at least as important to good athletic performance as the food you eat and is essential for efficient training.

It’s recommended that the ‘average person’ consume at least eight glasses of water each day (2 litres). The more active you are, the more water you need to replenish lost fluids.

Approximately one to three hours prior to a match or training, drink 450-650mL of water or sports drink (an additional 250mL, 10-20 minutes prior to training is also helpful).

While it’s not always easy to grab a drink during a match, try taking regular “sips” throughout.

After activity, you should aim to ‘push’ fluid intake even if you don’t feel thirsty. Drink 500-1000mL within one hour, post-exercise.

Ultimately, hydration is not simply a question of drinking fluids, but knowing your own body and drinking the right fluids for you, in various environmental conditions.

REMEMBER, caffeinated and carbonated beverages along with energy drinks are not a replacement for water.

For more information, check out facebook.com/sportmedsoccer.

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