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©2020 by Jonathon Reid

  • Jon Reid

Water and Dehydration

Physical Performance

Exercise performance is impaired when an individual is dehydrated by as little as 2% of bodyweight (Sport Nutrition, 2nd Edition, Human Kinetics).

As little as 1-2% dehydration can lead to a 5-10% drop in cardiac output, which impacts how efficiently you’re getting oxygen to your muscles. Less oxygen leads to less power output which leads to sub-optimal performance.

Also, when you become dehydrated your muscle tissues become a little bit sticky and don’t slide over each other like they’re supposed to. This leads to tight muscles, which leads to compromised positions, discomfort, a drop in force production and ultimately decreased performance.

Mental Performance

Dehydration has been shown to decrease performance on tasks that required attention and memory skills. In other words, your head gets ‘stuffy’, thinking is less clear and concentration drops off a cliff.

What does that mean in real terms?

Physical Performance

  • You default to bad positions and compromise your postural integrity; in other words, your technique goes AWOL and you get injured because of it.

  • You don’t swing the club well; you miss the shot.

  • You're a shambles.

  • You drop the ball.

Mental Performance

  • You fluff your lines in an important presentation.

  • You get tired, sleepy and irritable.

  • You mistake 8.50 for 850

  • You're a shambles.

  • You drop the ball.

Your New Summer Sports Drink

You lose more than just water when you sweat. You also lose electrolytes that are crucial for optimal functioning and these electrolytes need to be replaced.

Add half a squeezed lemon or lime and a pinch of Scottish rock salt to one litre of water and you’ve got yourself the perfect sports hydration drink.

The salt helps your body hold onto the water (so it doesn’t just flow right through you) and the lemon/lime provides taste and vitamins/minerals.

Take these Messages Home

  • Try to drink a minimum of two litres of water per day, aim for three

  • Take water everywhere you go

  • Drink before you’re thirsty


Sport Nutrition: An Introduction to Energy Production and Performance, Second Edition, Human Kinetics