The way you prepare your body before your game could be the difference between a par or birdie. This summer, take hydration seriously to improve your game.
Golf is a sport that requires your full mental and physical attention. It is common for people to be dehydrated without even knowing it. This affects not only your ability to think, but your ability to perform physical activities. Staying hydrated is crucial to being able to play your best, especially in the hot summer temperatures.
Here are some tips to help you stay hydrated to be at the top of your game:
- Don’t wait until you’re thirsty. If you find yourself feeling thirsty, you are already dehydrated.
- Prepare yourself for your game. 2 to 3 hours before you play by drinking 17 to 20 ounces of water. Then, about 20 to 30 minutes before your game, drink 8 ounces of water.1
- Keep hydrating during your game. Drink 7 to 10 ounces of water every 10 to 20 minutes during the activity.1
- Limit your caffeine and alcohol intake as this can potentially dehydrate you.
- For a more intense game, consider a sports drink. Electrolytes from sports drinks can help you to stay hydrated. However, choose your drink wisely to avoid added sugar.1
- Monitor your body as you play. Watch for signs of dehydration such as cramping, fatigue, nausea, and loss of coordination.
- Eat certain foods for hydration. Fruits and vegetables such as watermelon, cucumbers, and strawberries are great snacks for staying hydrated before and during a game.
- Dress for the occasion. In warm weather, wear breathable clothes. Choose lighter shades that don’t absorb the heat from the sun.
- Follow up. No more than half an hour after your game, drink 8 ounces of water.
Stay healthy with proper hydration to make the most of your game. Prepare your body with fluids before you play, and watch out for signs of dehydration.
Dr. Brett Braly is a board-certified fellowship-trained orthopedic surgeon specializing in spinal surgery. Dr. Braly is a leading advocate for minimally invasive techniques in spine surgery. Dr. Braly is named in the top "20 under 40" best spine surgeons by the North American Spine Society.