HYDRATION

WHY DO WE NEED HYDRATION?

The hydration levels of our bodies have a significant effect on our stamina, performance and risk of injury. 60% of our body weight is water and our bodies use water to digest food, carry oxygen through the blood, regulate body body temperature, lubricate joints, facilitate breathing and much more - so its pretty important!

HOW OFTEN SHOULD WE HYDRATE?

To look after ourselves properly, we should be properly hydrated throughout the day. Drinking water throughout the day will improve you body and mind in so many ways.

HOW DO WE STAY HYDRATED?

The recommended amount of water that the average human should consume is a minimum of 2 litres per day. This will vary from person to person, so it’s important you know the signs of dehydration and over hydration. If you don’t like plain water, you can always add fruit infusions to them to add flavour.

HOW MUCH WATER SHOULD I BE DRINKING?

Use this calculator to work out how much water you should be drinking each day

Water Intake Calculator

USEFUL TIPS

Aim to drink 2 litres of water a day.

Flavour water with fruit if you prefer

Use a bottle with markings to help keep you on track

Try replacing your usual drinks throughout the day with water

Keep track of your intake via an app

Avoid too much coffee and alcohol and fizzy drinks

LET'S GET HYDRATED!

WHY IS HYDRATION IMPORTANT?

Well, hydration has a significant effect on your performance, stamina and risk of injury.  Approximately 60% of our body weight is water, and our bodies use water to digest food, carry oxygen through the blood, regulate body temperature, lubricate joints, facilitate breathing, the list goes on!

WHAT ARE THE EFFECTS OF DEHYDRATION?

The well known symptoms of dehydration are: fatigue, lack of concentration, physical weakness, headaches, cramps, lack of coordination and irritability.  These are not good things when we are trying to perform at our best, but we also need to be aware of the effect we are having on our horses. For example, if our muscles are fatigued and we are lacking in concentration, we can be lacking our “self carriage” in the saddle and making errors of judgement. It seems pointless to spend all this time and effort getting our horse to their best, but not thinking about us!

WHAT IS THE BEST WAY TO STAY HYDRATED?

So, the best way to hydrate is by drinking plenty of water throughout the day starting with first thing in the morning.  But, I’m going to hold my hands up here and say that I used to start the day with a coffee!! And then followed it by several coffees throughout the day.  Now, although the caffeine gave me a slight lift, it did not outweigh the negative diuretic ( dehydrating)effect that the coffee had. I now start my day with a protein shake made with water, and I have to say, I’m much more ready to “go” than I was with a coffee! Don’t get me wrong, I still have a coffee in the morning, but not just coffee! So, if we want to hydrate properly throughout the day we should be drinking liquids every 30mins to an hour.

WHAT ABOUT ON COMPETITION DAYS?

If we are going to compete or to train, we are in all likelihood going to push ourselves more mentally and physically. Also, at shows it can be hard to fit in the regular water intake due to schedules, times, location of amenities and let’s be honest, where the loos are!As a rule, on the day of the show or that are training, try to drink a cup of water as soon as you wake up and then try to drink 1-2 cups of water in the hour before you ride. Having a couple of sips of water when you are just about to enter the ring will really help pick you up! It’s then really important to make sure you drink plenty when you finish to replenish your reserves and bring your hydration back up to pre-training/competing levels. Try to avoid drinking coffee ( or at least too much of it) and fizzy drinks.

I'm not very good with technology, how easy is it to use?

We've set up The Dressage Coach to be as accessible as possible with a lovely clear layout for members to use and navigate around.
For remote coaching, you have the option of either video reviews or live coaching. The video review service is done via you uploading a video to a secure Dropbox folder which can be done straight from your phone or tablet. It's really easy!

CAN I OVER-HYDRATE?

Yes!! Signs of over-hydration are: feeling water sloshing in your stomach, headaches and muscle cramps. You may also find yourself going to the toilet really often.Stop drinking if you think you’ve over-hydrated and wait until you feel a little more normal before you drink some more.

I’M A GROOM OR A COACH, DOES THIS APPLY TO ME?

Yes it does!! You still need to be 100% focussed on your job and be able to perform to the very best of your ability. Staying properly hydrated will keep you at you best.