Staying hydrated is vital for everyone, both adults and children. Hydration is one of the most important things to be aware of for young athletes, including gymnasts.
Hydration is necessary for two crucial reasons: first, hydrated muscles are stronger and more elastic. Second, dehydration can lead to heatstroke, which is detrimental to your child’s health.
In this article, we’ll go over why your child needs to stay adequately hydrated during their time at the gym.
Hydration Will Improve Energy Levels
First, hydration significantly affects a young athlete’s energy levels. When muscles are dehydrated, they lose their elasticity. If this happens, muscles cannot fully stretch or snap back into place quickly after exertion. This causes gymnasts who aren’t hydrated to tire out more quickly and have trouble keeping up with teammates.
Additionally, dehydration also causes fatigue by reducing blood and affecting oxygenation rates while working out.
Dehydration Can Lead to Muscle Cramping and Injury
Aside from being fatigued, dehydration is also a significant cause of injury in young gymnasts.
Dehydrated muscles cannot absorb shock properly, leading to muscle cramps and strains throughout the body. This usually happens when exercises become more challenging or more demanding.
Also, if your child becomes overheated during practice due to lack of water, this can lead to heat exhaustion or worse.
Dehydration Can Cause a Heat Stroke
If your young gymnast becomes overheated and dehydrated during practice, they are more susceptible to a heat stroke.
Heat strokes can be very dangerous and, in some cases, even fatal if not treated promptly. This is why it is crucial for young athletes to always have water on hand and remember to drink every so often when practicing or competing.
Being Thirsty Can Prevent Children from Performing Their Best
Also, one of the most common and obvious side effects of not drinking enough water is becoming thirsty.
Thirst can cause children to become distracted and unfocused, leading to poor performance in front of judges or their teammates. This is particularly true for gymnasts who tend to become more nervous when competing.
You must encourage your child to drink plenty of fluids before and after practice to avoid these symptoms during physical activities.
Keep an eye on how much liquids they’re consuming by bringing along a reusable water bottle that can track liquid intake throughout the day. Even better, teach your child to constantly hydrate even if you’re not around to remind them.
Aim to have your child sip at least once an ounce of water every 15 minutes while exercising, especially if it’s hot outside.
Proper Hydration Provides the Body with Fuel
The last important thing to consider regarding hydration in young athletes is how it affects the body’s energy levels.
Water provides fuel for muscles, which allows them to work harder and longer throughout strenuous physical activities. When properly hydrated, they won’t tire out quickly or easily.
Additionally, water also helps combat fatigue because it ensures sufficient blood flow through your child’s veins at all.
Remember these essential tips in keeping your young gymnast hydrated and healthy, especially when practicing or competing.
At OMEGA Gymnastics, your child’s safety and wellness are our priority. Check out our recreation programs, where they can have fun and stay safe while learning gymnastics.