Mild Dehydration's Impact On Sports Performance

December 28, 2011

It's been said that the quality of your physical effort can suffer with just 2% dehydration, which would be considered a mild to moderate degree. A new study published in the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research suggests that mental motor skills can start declining after you sweat off as little as 1% of your total body weight.

Researchers recruited 7 experienced golfers, all in their early 20s, and had them perform sport specific skills in both hydrated and dehydrated states. Hydration status was controlled through 12 hours of fluid restriction, so these guys weren't worn out from exercise.

Mild dehydration significantly impaired shot distance, reducing drives from around 417 to 377 feet. Accuracy was also reduced by more than 12 feet. Even if golf isn't your game, imagine how dehydration might impact your football passing, bat swinging and puck shooting performance. For tips on optimizing peak power output, read today's Breaking News post at