Four Tips for Staying Hydrated... and why it's important for muscle health

Why hydration is so important?

Whether you’re an elite athlete, recreational exerciser, office worker, or anything in between, hydration is the key to keeping your mind and body healthy and performing at its peak.

Keeping hydrated by drinking plenty of water allows your body to regulate many different and important aspects, such as, temperature and PH levels.  It also improves the breakdown of essential nutrients, increases focus and assists in the removal of waste.

If you have experienced any one of the following symptoms, your body has endured being in a stage of dehydration.

  • General fatigue
  • Lethargy
  • Dry mouth
  • Feeling thirsty
  • Muscle cramps/Soreness
  • Lack of concentration or focus
  • Dark yellow/light brown coloured urine
  • Light headedness
  • Nausea
  • Lack of sweat whilst doing a high intensity activity

Hydration is extremely important from a musculoskeletal point of view.  

The liquid part of your blood is called plasma, of which 92% is water. This shows how vital H2O is to the human body. Muscles perform at their peak when a sufficient amount of blood is being supplied to them with all the nutrients and energy as necessary. If your body does not have enough water within its system, muscles wont get what they need, which can result in cramping, increased tightness, fatigue and even muscle atrophy in extreme cases.

So how much water is enough?

Drinking enough to quench your thirst is what is recommended. This is enough to keep you feeling healthy and to avoid the aforementioned symptoms of dehydration.

Tips to ensure that you drink enough water during the day…

Here are some tips to assist you in staying hydrated:

  1. Drink enough to avoid being thirsty throughout the day.
  2. Have a water bottle with you and take regular sips.
  3. Set alarms/reminders during the day.
  4. Drink a glass of water with every meal and one first thing in the morning to rehydrate after sleeping.

We recommend paying extra attention to hydration after soft tissue therapy work to ensure that you get the most benefit from your treatment.

Written by Brendon Lang, Remedial Massage Therapist