A new research has concluded that 91pc of professional basketball, volleyball, handball and football players are dehydrated when they begin their training sessions.
The study was conducted by researchers from the Universidad de Castilla la Mancha (UCLM).
"Dehydration negatively affects sporting performance, even when the level of dehydration is low (such as a 2 pc loss of body weight through perspiration)," UCLM researcher and author of the article Ricardo Mora-Rodríguez said.
Many studies have tested dehydration in outdoor sports, but little scientific information is available on indoor sports. This new study calculates the loss of body fluids and salts on behalf of professional basketball, volleyball, handball and indoor football players.
"Despite being indoor sports, the pace these professionals play at makes them sweat a great deal", Mora-Rodríguez added. In this sense, it is worth highlighting indoor football players, who lose approximately 1.8 litres per hour through perspiration.
The researchers analysed how sports persons replenish lost body fluids by drinking liquids between workouts and the degree of dehydration "inherited" from the previous day that they begin their training sessions with.
Four professional men's sports teams were studied (Benetton de Treviso basketball and volleyball teams, the Ciudad Real handball team and the Boomerang indoor football team), from which 43 players re-hydrated, recovering 63 pc of the fluid they had lost through perspiration. As a result, their level of dehydration remained below 2 pc.
According to urine specific gravity data, 91pc of the players began their training sessions "slightly dehydrated". Furthermore, total sodium losses through perspiration amounted to an average of 1.3 grams per person.
"Professional indoor sports persons sweat profusely when playing their sports (1.4 litres/hour on average), but their rehydration habits prevent them from reaching levels of dehydration that would affect their sporting performance," the research underlined.
The authors insist how important it is to recover body fluids and sodium after training sessions.
The study has been published in the European Journal of Sport Science.