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Total body water (TBW) and water turnover rates (WTR) of 8 competitive swimmers (SW) and 6 age-matched non-training individuals (CON) were determined using deuterium oxide dilution and elimination. During the 7-day study, individuals in the SW group trained 9 times, swimming on average 42.4 km, while the CON group did no regular exercise. Water temperature in the swimming pool was between 26 and 29 °C during training sessions. Body mass at the beginning and end of the study period remained essentially the same in the SW (67.8 ± 6.3 kg) and CON (61.1 ± 8.5 kg) groups. Mean ± SD TBW of the SW (38.7 ± 5.6 L) was similar to that of the CON (37.5 ± 8:0 L). Mean WTR was faster in the SW (54 ± 18 ml · kg · day−1) than the CON (28 ± 21 ml · kg · day−1). Mean daily urine output was similar in the SW (14 ± 5 ml · kg · day−1) and CON (14 ± 3 ml · kg · day−1). Calculated non-renal daily water loss was faster in the SW (41 ± 21 ml · kg · day−1) than the CON (13 ± 20 ml · kg · day−1). This study demonstrates that WTR are faster in young swimmers who exercise strenuously in cool water than in non-training individuals and that the difference was due to the approximately 3-times greater non-renal water losses that the exercising group incurred. This suggests that exercise-induced increases in sweat rates are a major factor in water loss in swimmers training in cool water.
J. Leiper is with the Department of Biomedical Sciences at University Medical School, Aberdeen, AB25 2ZD, UK. R.J. Maughan is with the School of Sport and Exercise Sciences at the University of Loughborough, Loughborough, LE11 3TU, UK.