Hydration Status, Knowledge, and Behavior in Youths at Summer Sports Camps

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Nora R. Decher
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Douglas J. Casa
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Susan W. Yeargin
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Matthew S. Ganio
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Michelle L. Levreault
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Catie L. Dann
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Camille T. James
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Megan A. McCaffrey
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Caitlin B. O’Connor
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Scott W. Brown
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Purpose:

To assess the hydration status and level of hydration knowledge of youths at summer sports camps.

Methods:

Sixty-seven active youths, 57 males (mean ± SD, 12 ± 2 y, 136 ± 16 cm, 50.6 ± 21.1 kg) and 10 females (13 ± 2 y, 153 ± 8 cm, 45.2 ± 9.0 kg) participated in 4 d of sports camp. Hydration status was assessed before the first practice (AM) and after the second practice (PM). Participants completed suriveys assessing hydration knowledge (HAQ) and hydration habits on day 3 and a self-assessment (EQ#1).

Results:

Mean AM urine specific gravity (USG) and urine osmolality (Uosm) scores ranged from minimal to significant dehydration across 4 d, even when temperatures were mild. Correlations between hydration indices and EQ#1, ranging from 0.11 to −0.51, were statistically significant (P < .05), indicating that subjects recognized when they were doing a good or bad job hydrating. HAQ did not correlate strongly with hydration indices suggesting other impediments to hydration. Thirst correlated negatively with EQ#1 (from −0.29 to −0.60).

Conclusion:

Hydration at summer sports camp is a concern and special efforts need to be made to help youths develop hydration strategies.

Decher, Casa, Ganio, Dann, and James are with the Department of Kinesiology, University of Connecticut. Yeargin is with Indiana State University. Levreault is with the Division of Athletics, University of Rhode Island. McCaffrey is with the Division of Athletics, Quinnipiac University. O’Connor is with the Division of Athletics, North Carolina State University. Brown is with the Department of Educational Psychology, University of Connecticut.

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