Trainers: Exercise Safely in the Heat

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn., July 9 (UPI) — U.S. athletic trainers advise people exercising in summer heat that a darker urine color is a quick indicator of dehydration.

Athletic trainer Brendon McDermott of the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga and of the National Athletic Trainers’ Association said a well-hydrated person has urine more the color of lemonade than apple juice.

McDermott advises when it is hot and humid to back off on exercise intensity — for instance, try walking instead of running, or cutting the session short if not feeling well.

“Many cases of heat illness are preventable and can be successfully treated if such conditions are properly recognized and appropriate care is provided in a timely manner,” McDermott said in a statement.

McDermott and colleagues recommend helping the body prepare for longer duration exercise in warm conditions by starting slowly and gradually increasing activity intensity and duration. It is important to be properly hydrated before starting and to maintain proper hydration.

Other trainers’ recommendations include:

– Interspersing periods of rest during activity and assuring adequate rest between exercise bouts. Proper sleep decreases heat illness risks, as well.

– Exercising during cooler portions of the day such as early morning or late evening.

– Not participating in exercise if there are signs of illness such as fever, diarrhea, or extreme fatigue, which also increase heat illness risk.

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