Hydration Dos and Don'ts for Tennis Players

Hydrating Foods

When you need to deliver little extra calories and nutrients to your body, during prolonged training or recovery, fruit and vegetable juices will do excellent job. Products with 100 percent natural juices are the best, preferably freshly squeezed.

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Snacking on fruits and vegetables will deliver small amounts of fluids as well, in addition to valuable nutrients and phytochemicals. If you can, choose a whole food plant-based snack for maximum benefits, rather than a cookie, chocolate or other processed, nutrient-empty snacks.

What to Avoid

Avoid caffeinated drinks and alcohol because rather than adding fluid into your system, they are taking it away. For every cup of coffee, you need to drink one extra cup of water to get even.

More: 15 Hydration Facts for Athletes 

Soft drinks and other sugary drinks are not recommended either, as they have no beneficial nutrients and can cause blood sugar imbalances and performance problems. If you enjoy a morning coffee, make sure you limit it to 1-2 cups and drink extra water to hydrate properly.

Stay Cool and Hydrated Tips

During the hot summer months, try this little tip that has helped many heat sensitive athletes: Fill your water bottle 1/3 or 1/2 with water and place it in your freezer over night.

Before your training or competition, fill it to the top with room temperature water. The ice will slowly defrost over a period of a couple of hours and you will have access to ice cold water during your training.

Cooling yourself from inside will make the training more enjoyable because you'll be able to control your temperature better.  

Adding a tablespoon of chia seeds into your water also will make you feel hydrated. The chia seeds contain many beneficial minerals and fiber that expand when soaked in the water. When you later drink the water with chia seeds, they slow down the water transport through your system, and you stay better hydrated for longer time.  

More: 11 Hydration Strategies for Hot Weather

Prolonged sweating during the summer months may lead to mineral losses, especially sodium, potassium, calcium and magnesium. Electrolyte imbalances can lead to impaired performance, so make sure you add lost minerals to your body.

The best way to do it is through fresh vegetables and fruits and other whole foods that contain all the combination of minerals, vitamins and other valuable nutrients. Make yourself a freshly squeezed juice or smoothie.

Always bring extra water with you to your training. It is better to bring it back home with you rather than running out and performing poorly because of dehydration.

MoreWhy Sodium Potassium Balance is Critical for Better Hydration

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