Sunday, March 1, 2015

Are softball pants about preventing injury or keeping professionalism?

Now a day’s people passing by softball games, tournaments, and practices will more than likely see every player on the field wearing pants instead of shorts. Just a few years ago pants became a trending thing in softball and it has stuck ever since. Softball players these days probably wouldn’t know what to do if they had to wear shorts and play a game of softball. Many people have wondered if the pants that are worn today to help with preventing injuries from sliding and diving or is it to present a statement in the sense of professionalism?
Many coaches and even players prefer to wear pants to prevent the injuries that shorts cannot prevent because pants cover the player’s legs much more than shorts do. Many coaches and teams prefer pants because it removes the fear of sliding and getting injured, but shorts are still very popular, from little league to college. “The result from the research in Sports Cultures shows how pictures of athletes are rated better if the athlete is wearing a uniform. The article explains how uniforms add a “dimension of professionalism, team spirit, coordination, natural ability, and muscular strength.”1 Does the variation in a female softball player’s uniform reinforce the society’s consistent sexualization and objectification of the female body? In the early 1900s women were gaining new freedoms and breaking away from the stereotypical womanly roles that were expected of them: the mother and the homemaker. World War II opened up several doors that kept women out, and women were welcomed into the factories and onto the playing field. Sports cultures states that,The attempt to feminize softball determined the uniforms, which began to take the shape of costumes, short skirts, and even shorter shorts”. While very attractive, the skirts accomplished nothing in terms of practical uses. The uniforms did nothing to protect the legs of women sliding and diving into home. The uniforms might have looked good, but they were obviously made with alternative motives other than practicality. The impracticality of the uniforms made it very clear that the owners of the team were trying to gain an audience where the women are the spectacle and not the sport.”2
“Female athletes have made great strides in sports participation, yet they are still being limited because sports are still masculine dominated. However, there is a common misconception that sports are solely for men, the emphasis on physical appearance causes female athletes to overcompensate for her femininity while competing in an athletic realm. Revealing female uniforms have been a successful way of attracting audiences, sponsors, and media attention, but are gaining visibility based on sexualizing woman. In order to move towards a more equal playing field, we need to start thinking more critically about the practice and its implications of how uniforms affect women based on their practicality and function versus the visual appeal.”2



References
1Shorts vs. Pants. (2014, February 28). Retrieved February 28, 2015, from https://sportcultures.wordpress.com/2014/02/28/shorts-vs-pants/
2Softball Pants: Proper, Practical, and Professional. (2014, March 21). Retrieved February 28, 2015, from https://sportcultures.wordpress.com/2014/03/20/softball-pants-proper-practical-and-professional/

Friday, February 27, 2015

The Stroke Team


Teamwork is a big part of stroke recovery. With a major disease like this occurring to a person, a team of doctors helps the patient recover and rehabilitate into a normal life. So what doctors are making up this team?

Neurologist:
A physician who specializes in the science of the nerves and the nervous system, especially of diseases affecting them.

Neurosurgeon:
A surgeon who operates on the brain and any surrounding tissue that was damaged during a stroke.

General Physician:
A physician who treats acute and chronic illnesses and provides preventative care and health education to patients.

Physical Therapist:
A therapist that specializes in the treatment or management of physical disability, malfunction, or pain by exercise, massage, or hydrotherapy.  

Occupational Therapist:
A therapist that specializes in the treatment or management of developing, recovering, and maintaining daily living and working skills. These therapists attend to helping the patient relearn how to  regain their independence in grooming, dressing, hygiene, and toileting.  
 
Speech Therapist:
A therapist that specializes in the treatment or management of communication problems and swallowing complications.

Each of these people is crucial in the treatment plan of the patient who suffered the stroke. Throughout the patients recovery, each of these people is in constant contact with each other about how the patient does with them. The physical therapist tells the neurologist how the patients is rehabilitating, who tells the rest of the team how the patient is doing with that specific person. Each person is equally important in the recovery and rehabilitation of the patient.
 
References:
http://www.emoryhealthcare.org/stroke/staff.html - Stroke Physician Team - January 2015 - Emory Healthcare.

http://www.webmd.com/stroke/guide/stroke-treatment-care - Stroke: Treatment and Care - November 2013 - WebMD.

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Understanding the Bad

Sometimes survivors "neglect" their bad side. Survivors who have experienced neglect don't pay attention to the "bad" side. In fact, it can be so bad that they don't even look at the "bad side" of the world. There are a ton of terms for this phenomenon. Unilateral neglect is the most common. Other terms are:

  • unilateral spatial agnosia
  • unilateral visual neglect
  • hemi-inattention
  • hemi-imperception

This inattention may be caused by visual deficits on the neglected side, a problem of the eyes and eyesight. The problem with eyesight that cuts off half the world is called hemianopsia. Or it may be a matter that the brain is not processing information coming from that side, including vision. Or it could be both of those, vision and a brain problem, together. What do we pay attention to? There's a lot of stuff in this great big world so we make choices about what we attend to. But someone with unilateral neglect can't or won't pay attention to their "bad" side.
The "neuroplastic model of stroke recovery" was a term that was based on the observation that, no matter what deficits are left with the survivor there are groups of researchers trying to develop "brain rewiring" treatments to reverse those deficits. The neuroplastic model for unilateral neglect becomes really clear if you look at it as more of a "won't" issue and less of a "can't" issue. If a survivor won't, it suggests that they could. Because if they won't, then maybe their perspective can be changed so they will. So reducing inattention can be helped by paying more attention. With unilateral neglect inattention to the affected side is bad for obvious reasons.How do you get someone, or yourself, to pay attention? Therapists contend that you should approach and do everything on the affected side so that the stroke survivor attends this affected side. However, it's a good idea to start off on the good side, otherwise, you may not know if the survivor is even paying attention to what you're trying to communicate with them. For instance, the survivor may not understand instructions, context, spacial issues, etc that’s why it is best to do all the early teaching on the persons more dominant side.To start with, survivors can be encouraged to turn their head towards the neglected side. Eventually, the survivor should be encouraged not to turn their head, but to move their eyes towards the neglected side.It happens more often with people where the left side of their body is the "bad side." This may have something to do with the fact that we tend to be "right eye dominant”. That is just in the normal course of human events, the right eye is the one that we trust more, and use.
Using tactile stimulation can help survivors be aware of the neglected side. It's a good idea for survivors to understand that they have neglected side. If it's a vision problem, be aware that you have vision loss on that side. Examples in the room around them can be used. You might say how many chairs in this room, and the survivor would only count half of them as they would neglect half the room, and therefore have the chairs. This is another aspect of strokes that can take time to rehabilitate.


Saturday, February 21, 2015

Integration of Core Curriculum into Physical Education Class


These days, school can be very difficult for children especially with the high standards and expectations they are required to stand up to.  The concept of integrated curriculum has been around since the 19th century and it is once again being focused on for educational change.1  While many school districts are putting Physical Education (PE) on the chopping block there may be a better solution.  Besides the benefits of the physical exercise and promotion of fitness that PE classes strive for, there is also another aspect that can be focused on.  Integration of core curriculum classes such as Math, Science, English, and Social Studies allows students to continue to master the concepts while participating in their PE class.  This requires both the participation of the PE teacher as well as the core curriculum teacher.  With both teachers teaming up together, the benefits are endless.

http://www.centralmaine.com/2013/03/03/reading-playing-and-arithmetic-school

 
There are many simple ways to integrate in a PE class. To start, at a younger age such as Elementary school level, teachers can integrate math practices such as counting, adding and subtracting, and using odd and even numbers into their lesson plans.  Having students work on these concepts outside of the normal classroom will help them to realize how important and useful this information is.  This allows students to be able to recognize and apply mathematics in contexts outside of the class.1 If educators can show students the importance of this information it will help to motivate and encourage the students to learn the information.
More physical educators need to design and develop integrated lessons and share them with their colleagues in order to improve the interdisciplinary fit.1 Examples of school physical education curricula exist today that differ quite radically from a traditional sport and game oriented curriculum.2 In core curriculum, there are other aspects that teachers can integrate.  Skills such as social interaction and personal development skills, or thinking skills are selected and specifically taught as a significant part of the curriculum.2 If schools are able to participate in having integrated teachers, it will help to develop a well rounded and well educated student.
1Hatch, G. & Smith, D. (2013) Integrating Physical Education, Math and Physics. Journal of Physical Education, Recreation & Dance. 75(1). 42-50 DOI:10.1080/07303084.2004.10608541
2Placek, J. & O’Sullivan, M. (2013). The Many Faces of Integrated Physical Education. Journal of Physical Education, Recreation & Dance. 68(1). 20-24 DOI:10.1080/07303084.1997.10604872


Friday, February 20, 2015

Shoulder Series:External Impingement

Last week we talked about internal impingement. This week we will discuss external impingement, or subacromial impingement. This condition’s primary cause is the mechanical wear of the rotator cuff under the coracoacromial arch; this is the main intrinsic factor.1 Other biologic forces, such as vascular supply to the tendons, aging, inflammation, and the development of degenerative tendinopathy have been identified as potential causes of external impingement. Other factors that may lead to external compression injury include poor posture, muscle weakness, subtle tissue contractures, and altered scapular and glenohumeral kinematics.2 The causes of subacromial impingement are multifactoral and variable. 4,5

Abnormal morphology of the acromion and the link to impingement syndrome were described by Neer in 1972. He isolated the undersurface of the anterior one third of the acromion rather than its lateral or posterior aspect as the area responsible for mechanical wear on the structures in the subacromial space. The coracoacromial ligament as well as the acromioclavicular joint have also been described to contribute to impingement on the rotator cuff. 4,5

The pathology may involve one of more of the rotator cuff tendons and the long head of the biceps. Three progressive stages of impingement have been isolated; Stage 1 is characterized by edema and hemorrhage of the subacromial bursa. Stage 1 usually occurs in younger patients and is difficult to distinguish from an acute partial tear of the rotator cuff without imaging studies.3 This stage is reversible with conservative treatment. With continued insult, stage 2 develops, identified by histologic changes of fibrosis and tendinosis of the affected tendons. If allowed to progress, Stage 3 develops, with either a complete or partial rupture of the rotator cuff and biceps tendon with associated pathologic changes in the acromion and acromioclavicular joint. 2,4

shoulder_impingement_intro01.jpg
Source: eorthopod.com (MMG)

Last week: Internal Impingement-

References

1Dervey, E., Marshall, S., Rouse, S., Bernhardsson, S., Camargo, P. R., & McVeigh, J. G. (2014). Eccentric exercise therapy in the treatment of subacromial impingement syndrome: A critical review... including commentaries by Bernhardsson S, Camargo PR and McVeigh JG. International Journal Of Therapy & Rehabilitation, 21(7), 338-345.

2Yildirim, M. A., Ones, K., & Celik, E. C. (2013). Comparison of Ultrasound Therapy of Various Durations in the Treatment of Subacromial Impingement Syndrome. Journal Of Physical Therapy Science, 25(9), 1151-1154.

3AYDIN, A., YILDIZ, V., TOPAL, M., TUNCER, K., KÖSE, M., & ŞENOCAK, E. (2014). Effects of conservative therapy applied before arthroscopic subacromial decompression on the clinical outcome in patients with stage 2 shoulder impingement syndrome. Turkish Journal Of Medical Sciences, 44(5), 871-874. doi:10.3906/sag-1303-91

4Lopes, A. D., Timmons, M. K., Grover, M., Ciconelli, R. M., & Michener, L. A. (2015). Original article: Visual Scapular Dyskinesis: Kinematics and Muscle Activity Alterations in Patients With Subacromial Impingement Syndrome. Archives Of Physical Medicine And Rehabilitation, 96298-306. doi:10.1016/j.apmr.2014.09.029

Upper Body Exercises for the Stay at Home Mom

http://tinyurl.com/q88m6lr
There are five different parts of your upper body, these consist of chest (pectoralis major), back, arms, core, and shoulder. Each part of the upper body is very important to focus on, just like leg day. There isn’t one part that is more important than the other, so getting them all equally worked is important as they all connect in some way. The core, or abdominal muscles, is a very important because those muscles connect up to your chest, to your back, and then connect down to your thighs. Working your back and shoulders will help your posture which in return helps prevent injuries. Having strong arms helps with everyday activities as well, such as reaching, grabbing, and carrying things.
For stay at home moms, upper body exercises are very important. Having a strong upper body allows mom’s to be able to multi task. Performing multiple tasks such as carrying a child and cooking dinner can kill the back if it lacks strength. Which proves to be even more important for moms to get fit and stay fit to help with their normal tasks of the day.
Chest- a good exercise for the chest would be bench, but since most moms do not have access to this equipment at home due to funds a mom could lay down on the floor or getting on a physio ball and using dumbbells or heavy books and pushing them upward would give them the same results.
Back- russian twists would be a good back exercise and this exercise also works out the obliques. The russian twists consist of you sitting on the floor and either holding a weight or holding your hands together and pick up your feet from the ground. Begin to twist your body and hit the weight or your fists into each side on the ground. Left and right count as one.
Core (Obliques)- There are so many different exercises for the core and they are easiest to do at home. Sit ups, russian twists, and leg climbs are just  a few that can be done.
Arms- Arm exercises would consist of curls, overhead press, and upright row. There are many more but these would be a good start for stay at home moms.
Shoulder- To start out a good exercise would be dumbbell lateral raises, rear deltoid fly, and upright rows.

Why Upper Body Exercises Are Crucial. (2013, May 14). Retrieved February 21, 2015, from http://www.fitday.com/fitness-articles/fitness/exercises/why-upper-body-exercises-are-crucial.html

Weigel, A. (2014, October 23). 4 Must-Try Shoulder Shaping Exercises | Skinny Mom | Where Moms Get the Skinny on Healthy Living. Retrieved February 21, 2015, from http://www.skinnymom.com/2014/10/23/4-must-try-shoulder-shaping-exercises/#_pg_pin=522192

Distance Running a Thing of the Past

In my blog from last week I referenced two articles written by Eric Cressey that dealt with conditioning and training of pitchers and other athletes. This week my intent is to highlight a few parts of the first of the two articles and give my input on what is said.

In A New Model for Training Between Starts: Part 1 Cressey makes nine points on why he believes distance running is not the correct action for pitchers. His first point is that by running long distance your immune system becomes weaker, therefore the chances of spreading of any disease among the team is higher. Cressey references that in a review done in 2006 by Glesson that “post exercise immune function depression is most pronounced when exercise is continuous [and] prolonged.” So is the health of your players and team worth it?

Cressey points out the lifestyle of many baseball athletes from collegiate to the professional levels as another negative aspect. Many of the players deal with absurd sleeping hours from the crazy travel schedule and horrible dietary habits from being on the road as many of the clubhouses don't serve anything healthy or gourmet. Many of the meals for the players are done cheaply such as PB&J’s or pizza as many teams are on a budget. When you take these two factors into account along with the addition of too much alcohol you're creating a mess of the athletes hormonal environment as there is a reduction in testosterone and growth hormone output. Which are the same effects that are found in endurance athletes. Two negatives still don't make a right.

The third negative impact of distance running is that of mobility concerns. Pitchers who are dependent on having mobility in their hips to generate stride length and in turn higher velocity are being deprived by the action of jogging. The action of jogging doesn't engage the hip flexors like that of sprinting does, therefor, distance runners lose the flexibility. Last time I checked there weren't too many pitchers in the MLB that didn't have good velocity behind their fastball.

Due to the beast of the sport of baseball players are always at risk with a long season (the longest of all sports), overhead throwing (not a natural movement), and unilateral dominance. Unilateral dominance is mainly seen in the athletes that throw and hit from the same side. Cressey references Grey Cook as saying that asymmetry is the biggest predictor in injury. So what does this have to do with distance running? Well distance running doesn't help to correct these issues as the movement is a straightforward movement. As Cressey puts it pitchers are better off just shagging fly balls cause the are at least moving side to side
www.topvelocity.net

Lastly Cressey bluntly puts it, “distance running is boring”.  I’d have to agree, when was the last time that you or anyone other than an avid distance runner was excited about running distance? Probably doesn't happen too often. Just as any other training that is done whether it be for that Monday 8 am calculus class or the the next big start in front of a sold out crowd you're not going to get the most out of it unless you enjoy it. With this in mind and the fact that distance running is detrimental to the players career, how about we change the way that the athlete trains and lets make it fun or at least enjoyable.

For more of a in depth look at Cressey’s reasoning please visit his article linked above as well as his numerous other articles. In next weeks blog I will take a look at part 2 of these articles and highlight a few of my favorite points.


References
Cressey, E. (2008, January 31). A New Model for Training Between Starts: Part 1.
Retrieved February 21, 2015, from http://www.ericcressey.com/a-new-model-for-training-between-starts-part-1

Differences in the Sports Medicine Staff

Differences in the Sports Medicine Staff
In honor of National Athletic Training Month coming up in a few weeks, this blog is being written to talk about one of the most common mistakes the public makes in confusing the roles of the Sports Medicine Staff. There are numerous amounts of health care professionals that can make up a sports medicine staff, but the ones that are mixed up the most are athletic trainers, physical therapists, and personal trainers.   

Athletic Trainers

Athletic trainers are health care professionals that coincide with a physician to provide preventative services, emergency care, clinical diagnosis, therapeutic intervention and rehabilitation of injuries and medical conditions. Athletic trainers treat a variety of patients, including: professional, college, secondary school and youth athletes, dancers, musicians and military personnel. Athletic trainers can work in a variety of locations including schools, physician clinics, and hospitals. 1,2

Physical Therapists

Physical therapists are healthcare professionals who diagnose and treat individuals, of all ages, who have medical problems or other health-related conditions, illnesses, or injuries that limits their abilities to move and perform functional activities as well as they would like in their daily lives. 1

         PT Scope of Practice
  • Examining (history, system review and tests and measures) individuals with impairment, functional limitation, and disability or other health-related conditions in order to determine a diagnosis, prognosis, and intervention.
  • Alleviating impairment and functional limitation by designing, implementing, and modifying therapeutic interventions.
  • Preventing injury, impairment, functional limitation, and disability, including the promotion and maintenance of health, wellness, fitness, and quality of life in all age populations.
  • Engaging in consultation, education, and research.

Personal Trainers

Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialists (CSCSs) are professionals who apply scientific knowledge to train athletes for the primary goal of improving athletic performance. They conduct sport-specific testing sessions, design and implement safe and effective strength training and conditioning programs and provide guidance regarding nutrition and injury prevention. They also work with physicians and athletic trainers to further a rehabilitation program for an athlete.  1,2


Each health care professional has a specific set of certifications and scopes of practice that they must follow to ensure the safety of every athlete. Though all are similar roles, each has an important part in the sports medicine staff and cooperation between these roles is key to ensuring the athlete’s best interest.


Sources:

1 Link, A., What’s the difference between a personal trainer, athletic trainer, and physical      therapist. (2011). ACE., Retrieved from http://www.acefitness.org/blog/2179/what-s-the-difference-between-a-personal-trainer

2 Athletic Training., NATA., Retrieved from http://www.nata.org/athletic-training

Fad Diets & Negative Effects of Soy Protein

Fad diets have been a huge misconception for the average clientele for personal trainers the last decade. Pyramid schemes, magic creams and lotions, 7-minute workouts, and shakes for meals are many of the popular items making it difficult for trainers to find clients and keep them on the correct nutrition and exercise.

In the following read, you will be informed of just a few things about the proteins used in these popular diets and schemes that can cause harm to your mind and body rather than positive results.

A popular routine that has been presented by companies like Herbalife, Advocare, Shakeology, and others is using a shake as a meal replacement. Many of these companies use the ingredients soy protein isolate and soy lecithin. In simple terms, the bottom of protein food chain and the lowest value you put in your body.

Soy protein can inhibit testosterone and growth hormone production, so for the average person or even child, a very bad thing. Testosterone and growth hormone are the two main hormones in the body used to create muscle.

Soy contains large amounts of biologically active compounds called isoflavones, which function as phytoestrogens… that is, plant-based compounds that can activate estrogen receptors in the human body.1 So for the fitness enthusiast venturing into a new workout regimen, why would they want more estrogen to cause us to lose even more testosterone?
Animal studies show that soy isoflavones can cause breast cancer. There are also human studies showing that soy isoflavones can stimulate the proliferation and activity of cells in the breasts. 1

In one study, 48 women were split into two groups. One group ate their normal diet, the other supplemented with 60 grams of soy protein.1
After only 14 days, the soy protein group had significant increases in proliferation (increase in number) of the epithelial cells in the breasts, which are the cells that are most likely to turn cancerous.1


A protein of whey, milk, casein, hydrolyzed or a blend of all is the best option for someone wants to add extra amount of protein into their diet. But you want to remember using a shake as a meal, even with protein, is highly frowned upon. With a shake you will never get the same amount of calories, carbohydrates, or fats needed to fulfill your body’s nutrient needs.

Another huge mistake I have noticed when potential clients or even just members of a gym are asking questions is the amount of money they are spending on the products from these protein powders and shakes. Herbalife protein is strictly soy protein isolate, as I said before the lowest of the low, which costs roughly $40-$50 a pound (actually 12.7 oz) depending where you order (Herbalife distributor, eBay, Amazon, etc.)2 In the eyes of a personal trainer who despises this protein, charging that high of an amount for a low quality protein is absurd.

A great quality protein, a hydrolyzed protein blend, like Optimum Nutrition HydroWhey is roughly $40-$50 for a much higher quality of protein for close to four pounds!3

So tell me this, when you have a company advertising and marketing their pyramid scheme company to the masses for unbelievable results for a low quality protein for three times the price, why would you give them business? Or do your research and find the correct products that will fuel and rebuild your body in the best way possible for a great price.

Although these are just a couple of shortcomings I have seen from these product lines and companies, I highly support the use of supplements and proteins for certain needs of a persons nutrition and diet.

Herbalife Protein Powder 12.7 oz. (n.d.). Retrieved February 16, 2015, from http://www.amazon.com/Herbalife-Protein-Powder-12-7-oz/dp/B00BPN3QZM

Is Soy Bad For You, or Good? The Shocking Truth. (2013, September 22). Retrieved February 16, 2015, from http://authoritynutrition.com/is-soy-bad-for-you-or-good/

Platinum Hydrowhey. (n.d.). Retrieved February 16, 2015, from http://www.optimumnutrition.com/products/platinum-hydrowhey-p-271.html


The Evolution of the Game: National Signing Day

The first Wednesday in February, National Signing Day, is the most anticipated Wednesday of the entire year. On this day high school football recruits sign their Letter of Intent, which states what school they will be attending and fax it into their respected coach. With the growth of social media over the past decade this day has become more of a circus than anything. On this prestigious Wednesday, television channels such as ESPN flock to high schools all over the nation with wall to wall coverage to see highly recruited athletes make their decisions.  The player could just sign the LOI and go on with their day, but most athletes like to take full advantage of time slot on ESPNU. So what do they do? From the limos to the first rate suits, to the bag with their top five schools hats in it the athletes spare no expense in letting the world know what school  they will be attending in the fall.
Courtesy of Field Street Forum
http://tinyurl.com/pmcus8p
       Some college coaches are tired of this circus and have come up with a simple plan. Eliminate National Signing Day. When a school makes an offer and a recruit accepts, he signs. At any time. End of story. End of drama. One of the supporters of ending national signing day, Rich Rodriguez head coach at the University of Arizona said they have made Signing Day an event when it should not be an event, but what if the first Wednesday in February passed without fanfare because coaches had been signing up players all along, and because some of the top prospects were still weighing their options?1   It just might make coaches think twice about throwing out 125 offers when they can sign only 25 players. It just might make players get more serious about choosing a school rather than a coach, no more circus atmosphere surrounding the most serious decision of these young men's lives.2




1Staples, A. (2015, February 11). As Rich Rodriguez knows, ending National Signing Day could be beneficial for all. Retrieved February 16, 2015.

2Scarbinsky, K. (2015, February 15). No more National Signing Day? Yes, please. Retrieved February 16, 2015.

Creating a Healthy Relationship Between Your Recovery and Hydration

Water is an important component to our health and recovery. In fact, our bodies consist of approximately 70% water. Dehydration of as little as 1-2% of body weight can compromise physical or cognitive performance. Think of the detrimental effects it can have on a recovery from an intense workout or after an injury.  As an athlete suffering at this level of dehydration, you may begin to experience salty sweat, fatigue, dry mouth/throat, upset stomach, or even a decrease in physical performance. There is also a greater risk of exertional heat injury. It’s crucial for fluid replacement practices that optimize hydration status before, during, and after competition.


Dehydration of greater than 3% of body weight further disturbs physiologic function and increases an athlete’s risk of developing an exertional heat illness, such as, heat cramps, heat exhaustion, or heat stroke.[1] This level of dehydration can happen in less than one hour if the athlete is already dehydrated going into exercise or competition.


As an athlete, it’s important to be educated about the ways you can stay hydrated before, during, and after exercise. In order to fully recover after a hard workout or competition, your body has to have fluids, sodium, potassium, and others essential components replaced in order to heal. A few things to remember when you’re working hard and sweating profusely are:


  • Sports drinks, pickle juice, or fruits like bananas are excellent sources of sodium, potassium, and electrolytes that will help your body heal more quickly.
  • Fluid replacement should be be close to the amount of fluid loss and should keep the body at less than 2% of body weight from dehydration. Typically, you should have 6-8 fl oz to every 15 to 20 minutes of moderate exercise.
  • In order to have a speedy and complete recovery from dehydration, you should drink 1.5L of fluid for each kilogram of body weight loss during exercise.


Remaining hydrated will enhance cardiovascular function, thermoregulatory function, muscle functioning, fluid volume status, and exercise performance. The Autonomic Nervous System will also peak and remain sharp during competition.[2]


While hydration before and during exercise is essential for good athletic performance, hydration after exercise is highly important to the athlete’s overall health. A high rate of fluid consumption during the first two hours of post-exercise rehydration is known to increase plasma volume significantly. Rehydrating after exercise should be geared towards correcting fluid loss with water, as well as carbohydrates to restore glycogen levels, and electrolytes. To have an immediate recovery, it’s important that you receive these within the first hour after exercise. Water is an essential beverage to helping in rehydrating the body. However, sports drinks with little sugar can aid in receiving carbohydrates, electrolytes, sodium, and potassium.


Replacement of sweat losses is an essential part of the recovery process. Exercise performance will be impaired if complete rehydration does not occur. It’s crucial for you as an athlete to make a full hydration recovery after each performance or injury so that you can jump back to your exercise or competition faster and to your full performance potential.
References
Casa, D., Armstrong, L., Hillman, S., Montain, S., & Reiff, R. (2000). National Athletic Trainers’ Association Position Statement: Fluid Replacement for Athletes. Journal of Athletic Training, 35(2), 212-224. Retrieved February 13, 2015, from http://www.nata.org/sites/default/files/FluidReplacementsForAthletes.pdf


Decker, M. (2014, February 2). Current and Potential Practices in Athletic Training. Retrieved February 13, 2015, from http://www.kon.org/urc/v10/athletic-training/decker.html

Dupont, D. (2013, October 2). Staying Hydrated Helps Heart Rate Recover Faster. Retrieved February 13, 2015, from http://breakingmuscle.com/nutrition/staying-hydrated-helps-heart-rate-recover-faster