Health Watch - Preparing for School: Summer Practices

Health Watch is a Public Service of the Office of News and Publications and is intended to provide general information only and should not replace the advice of a medical professional. You should contact your physician if you have questions about any of these topics.

This week on Health Watch, we’re talking about getting ready for the new school year. Even if classes haven’t started, kids who participate in sports or other activities may already be practicing. Sports or marching band practice on a hot summer day makes proper hydration essential.

Dr. Luis Palacios, a sports medicine expert at UT Southwestern Medical Center, says hydration is important to prevent heat stress and heat stroke. Dehydration also impairs performance. For workouts of under an hour, Dr. Palacios suggests drinking 4 to 8 ounces of water every 15 to 20 minutes. For longer workouts, you may need sports drinks to replace electrolytes lost through sweat. Drink before, during and after working out, and don’t wait until you’re thirsty to drink. Avoid caffeinated drinks such as iced tea or colas because those don’t replenish bodily fluids. 



August 2009

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