Dancers sweat. They sweat and they work their bodies for long periods of time–much like other athletes.
Enter hydration. Keeping your body properly hydrated is important as a dancer. Today we have Emily Harrison, MS, RD, LD with us to take a closer look at this key subject….
Even mild dehydration can affect performance. Staying hydrated is extremely important to a dancer’s performance because the first signs of dehydration are fatigue and poor balance. Thirst actually only kicks in after the body has lost 1-2 liters of water. If you are thirsty then you are already dehydrated.
Water makes up approximately 60% of body weight and is the largest component of the human body. The muscles we work so hard to develop as dancers (skeletal muscles) are about 73% water, your blood is about 93% water and even bones and teeth have some water. Water is critical for maintaining homeostasis within the body and is important in the thousands of biochemical and physiological functions our body goes through every day. Water aids in digestion and is important in the transport and elimination systems of the body.
Overheating and performance:
It’s important for dancers to know that being properly hydrated helps keep the body from overheating. Helping the body promote heat loss when dancing full out will improve athletic performance and aid in recovery. This is especially important for dancers wearing hot costumes and performing under stage lights. Sweat losses during performance can be significantly more than during rehearsal of the same piece. This is why drinking regularly (even small, regular sips) is an important habit during a show.
How much is really needed? Can a dancer get fluids from other things besides water? [Read more…]