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Keeping Your Child Hydrated for the Game

By Donna Stark

Children and sports. There is usually no end to the amount of stuff a child needs to be involved with their chosen sport, is there? Workout clothes, uniforms, equipment, special shoes for training, special shoes for the game, and that super expensive athletic bag to carry it all in. But the most important item that your child needs for both practice and games is a decent-sized water bottle ... especially if your child is playing a summer sport!

Staying Hydrated During Sports

Whether your child is on an elite traveling sports team or is still trying to learn how to hold a bat, it's important to teach the value of staying hydrated. Take a look at some of the reasons why drinking the recommended amount of water is important for your young athlete.

  • Lubricates the joints
  • Delivers oxygen throughout the body
  • Assists the body with absorbing shock
  • Regulates body temperature
  • Maintains proper function of the body
  • Promotes absorption of minerals and nutrients
  • Boosts energy

How to Maintain Good Hydration

Good hydration means getting the right amount of water in your child's body before, during, and after their physical activity; fortunately for us parents, there are more ways than one to accomplish that. Here are some suggestions.

  • Produce - Certain vegetables and fruits are rich in water, so consider packing them as snacks! Head to your local grocery store to pick up some watermelon, strawberries, oranges, celery, and bell peppers. 
  • Water - Encourage your child to drink a glass of water before breakfast, carry a water bottle during the day, and order water when eating out after a game. These tiny changes in behavior can make a big difference!
  • Flavor - Adding lemon, lime, orange, or cucumber slices to your child's water bottle is a great way to flavor their beverage and keep them motivated to drink more.
  • Popsicles - A fun and slightly deceptive way to get more fluids into your child's body is to offer them an all-natural fruit juice popsicle! You can even make your own for a healthier version!

Keeping Your Child Healthy

Remember, if your child is very active or exposed to hot environments, you may need to supply more water than you think. Also, do not wait until your child is thirsty to offer them a drink because by that time, dehydration has already set in. Start teaching the importance of drinking water at a young age and get your child in the habit of taking frequent beverage breaks during their physical activities. By teaching these behaviors early on, you will be setting your child up for a lifetime of good health!

To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Woodbury, Minn.

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