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Hydration and muscular performance: Does
fluid balance affect strength, power and highintensity endurance?
Article in Sports Medicine · January 2007
Impact Factor: 5.04 · Source: PubMed





7 authors, including:
Carl M Maresh

Jeffrey Anderson

University of Connecticut

University of Connecticut





Douglas Casa

William J Kraemer

University of Connecticut

The Ohio State University




All in-text references underlined in blue are linked to publications on ResearchGate,
letting you access and read them immediately.


Available from: Douglas Casa
Retrieved on: 06 July 2016

obscured or modified. The PDF may be used as follows: • to make copies of the article for your own personal use.This material is the copyright of the original publisher. • to make copies and distribute copies (including through e-mail) of the article to research colleagues. for the personal use by such colleagues (but not commercially or systematically.g. Vol. • to present the article at a meeting or conference and to distribute copies of such paper or article to the delegates attending the meeting. 10 (pp. including for your own classroom teaching use (this includes posting on a closed website for exclusive use by course students). e. 2007. Unauthorised copying and distribution is prohibited. Printing and storage is for scholarly research and educational and personal use. No. via an e-mail list or list serve). • to include the article in full or in part in a thesis or dissertation (provided that this is not to be published commercially). 907-921) ISSN: 0112-1642 Review Article Hydration and Muscle Performance Terms and Conditions for Use of PDF The provision of PDFs for authors' personal use is subject to the following Terms & Conditions: The PDF provided is protected by copyright. 37. . All rights not specifically granted in these Terms & Conditions are expressly reserved. The PDF may not be posted on an open-access website (including personal and university sites). Any copyright or other notices or disclaimers must not be removed.

. . The physiological demands of strength. . . . . . . . . . .2 Metabolic Mechanisms . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . however. . . . Power and High-Intensity Endurance? Daniel A. . . . . . . . . . . . . Armstrong. . . . . . . . . . . . . Storrs. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Potential Mechanisms of Hypohydration . . . . . . . . . . . . . . All rights reserved. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 919 Abstract Significant scientific evidence documents the deleterious effects of hypohydration (reduced total body water) on endurance exercise performance. . 918 4. . .2 Power . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Sports Med 2007. . . . . . . . power (by ≈3%) and high-intensity endurance (by ~10%). . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Anderson. . . . . . . . . 918 3. . . . . . .1 Exacerbating Factors . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . hypohydration appears to consistently attenuate strength (by ≈2%). . . .2 Carl M. . . California. . . . . . . . . . 918 3. . . . . Important Influences in Previous Research . . . . . . . . 909 1. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Conclusions . . . . . . . . . . .1 Douglas J. . . . . Fullerton. . . . . . . California State University. . . . . . Hydration and Muscular Performance Does Fluid Balance Affect Strength. . . . . . . . . . 916 2. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Connecticut. . . . . . . . . 907 1. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 910 2. . . . .4 Ecological Validity and Best Practices for Future Research . . . . 908 1. .3 High-Intensity Endurance . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 917 3. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .3 Buffering Mechanisms . . . . . . .1 William J. .1 Cardiovascular Mechanisms . . . . . Judelson. . . . Volek1 1 2 Human Performance Laboratory. . . . . . . . .1 Strength . . . . . . . . . . . 910 2. . . USA Department of Kinesiology. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 Lawrence E. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Unfortunately. . . . . . . . . .5 Important Considerations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Kraemer1 and Jeff S. . . . . . power and high-intensity endurance couple with a lack of scientific support to argue against previous hypotheses that suggest alterations in cardiovascular. . . . . .4 Comparisons and Relevance of Conclusions . . . . . . . . . . . . .2 Masking Factors . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 912 2. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . the influence of hypohydration on muscular strength. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 37 (10): 907-921 0112-1642/07/0010-0907/$44. . . . . . . . . . . Maresh. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . On the other . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . power and high-intensity endurance (maximal activities lasting >30 seconds but <2 minutes) is poorly understood due to the inconsistent results produced by previous investigations. . . . . . . . . . . . degree and rate of water loss remain unclear due to a lack of suitably uninfluenced data. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 908 1. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . University of Connecticut. . . . the relationships between performance decrement and crucial variables such as mode. . . . . . . Casa. . . . . . . . . . . . . . USA This material is the copyright of the original publisher. . . . . . . . . . . 915 2. . . . . Several subtle methodological choices that exacerbate or attenuate the apparent effects of hypohydration explain much of this variability. .4 Neuromuscular Mechanisms . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . After accounting for these factors. . . . . . Unauthorised copying and distribution is prohibited. . . . . Department of Kinesiology. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .3 Other Potential Influences . . . 914 2. Effects of Hypohydration on Muscular Performance . . . .1. . . . . . . . . . . . 910 1. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . metabolic and/or buffering function represent the performance-reducing mechanism of hypohydration. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 917 3. . . . . . . . . . . .1 Jeffrey M. . . . . .95/0 REVIEW ARTICLE  2007 Adis Data Information BV. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . suggesting alterations in total body water affect some aspect of force generation. . . . . . . . . . Contents Abstract . . 917 3. . . . .

908 hand.g. In the days or hours preceding a competition. Throughout this article. power and high-intensity endurance. wrestling and boxing) regularly alter their body mass. and how. 37 (10) . hypohydration affects muscular strength. while dehydration refers to the process of reducing total body water (i. hypohydration might directly affect some component of the neuromuscular system. Some active individuals have difficulty in voluntarily maintaining euhydration during exercise and often fail to rehydrate properly between exercise sessions. PubMed) and reference lists from related original research.[10] or high-intensity endurance (maximal activities lasting >30 seconds but <2 minutes).[10] peak power (the power generated when a muscle engages in a maximal concentric action at the optimal shortening velocity). Because not every study examining wrestlers or boxers was designed to evaluate hydration state. caloric restriction or training status). book chapters and review articles. is an important factor to consider when attempting to maximise muscular performance in athletic. subject populations and/or testing modalities that preclude a direct application to only changes in hydration status. which if interpreted only in the context of hydration would overemphasise the effects of hypohydration (‘exacerbating factors’). 1. In other cases. power and high-intensity endurance. as does the failure of some studies to control for factors that obscure the association between hydration state and performance (e. which if interpreted only in the context of hypohydration would underestimate the effects of hydration on high-intensity performance (‘masking factors’). Unauthorised copying and distribution is prohibited.g. hypohydration inconsistently affects muscle performance. Scientific literature on this topic was ob- tained through a systematic review of published articles from Internet databases (e. the purpose of this article is to objectively analyse the scientific literature examining the effects of hydration state on muscular performance to determine if. the literature currently lacks a comprehensive review describing the effects of hypohydration on strength. the use of interventions that impair exercise performance independent of water loss (e. many weight-control athletes significantly reduce their body mass. typically by decreasing total body water and limiting caloric intake. hypohydration refers to a state of reduced total body water. Significant research documents the effects of hypohydration on endurance exercise performance.e.[7-9] with less attention given to the influence of hydration status on muscular strength (the maximal force a muscle or muscle group can generate at a specified velocity). but this possibility awaits thorough evaluation. these influences counteracted or attenuated the effects of hypohydration.g. therefore. A major aim is to compare and contrast studies to better understand how different methodological factors contribute to the relationship between hypohydration and performance.Judelson et al.24-26] superficially discuss the effects of hydration state on anaerobic performance. 1. In previous original research investigations. dehydration leads to hypohydration). Therefore.g. exercise-heat stress) explains some of this inconsistency. military and industrial settings. All rights reserved.  2007 Adis Data Information BV. power and highintensity endurance and.1 Exacerbating Factors Because athletes who participate in weight-control sports (e. This material is the copyright of the original publisher. these studies employed specific research designs. Although reviews and position statements discussing bodyweight loss[11-23] and general hypohydration[7. Sports Med 2007. Sometimes these influences magnified the effects of hypohydration. Generally. Important Influences in Previous Research Many high-quality investigations that were not designed to examine isolated hypohydration have been inappropriately discussed or analysed in the context of hypohydration. A critical review of the available literature suggests hypohydration limits strength.[1-6] leading to reductions in body water that affect an array of physiological processes and ultimately limit exercise capacity. many studies examining the effects of acute mass loss on performance used these athletes as subjects.

All rights reserved. inappropriately analysed and discussed acute weight loss solely in the context of hypohydration.38] and at least one study scientifically confirmed this conjecture.[40] corroborated this hypothesis when they discovered a significant inverse relationship be 2007 Adis Data Information BV. They proposed that the haemodynamic adaptations resulting from endurance training (primarily increased plasma volume) provided an extra reserve of water to offset the fluid shifts caused by dehydration. the physiological basis for this argument and parallel findings in endurance athletes suggest results obtained from women without controlling for menstrual status must be cautiously interpreted. helps counteract the effects of hypohydration because the body’s greater fluid reservoir minimises the percentage of fluid lost for any given decrease of total body water.49] This increased fluid reserve.1 and 2. The decreased body mass characteristic of hypohydration might offset reduced muscular strength and/or power. Finally.51-56] and high-intensity endurance[51. but failed to affect performance in endurance athletes.[39] clearly demonstrated that 3% hypohydration reduced isokinetic quadriceps muscular endurance (ability to maintain ≥50% maximal peak torque) in power athletes and sedentary controls. Body mass based tests require less force as hypohydration progresses.2 Masking Factors Several authors have hypothesised that training state significantly alters the effects of hydration on muscular performance. complicating the interpretation of these studies. the effects of hypohydration are not easily separated from the potential performance-reducing effects of caloric restriction. studies employing dehydration techniques that increased muscle temperature (via exercise and/or heat exposure). Caterisano et al. vertical jumping or short-distance sprinting).[16. this reduction of physiological demand promotes improved performance This material is the copyright of the original publisher.[39] Very little research examines the effect of hydration on strength.[14.53-59] employed measurements in which only the subject’s body mass resisted the testing movement (e. Although menstrual status appears to exert little influence on strength or anaerobic exercise performance.7% hypohydration. as suggested in the previous paragraph.33-37] 909 tween lean body mass (and hence. increasing muscle and/ or core temperature above specific thresholds reduces muscle function. the specific methodology employed to dehydrate subjects in hydration studies is vital. Although no scientific investigations confirm this hypothesis.[47] the alterations in concentration and activity of the fluid regulatory hormones across the reproductive cycle promote water retention during the luteal phase. Unauthorised copying and distribution is prohibited. Sports Med 2007. limits work capacity and promotes fatigue. controlled for subjects’ menstrual status. If dehydration was coupled with caloric restriction and/or subjects were unable to completely recover from the stress of the dehydration. 1.[33. therefore. 37 (10) . reservoir of total body water) and strength reductions following 1.[27-29] Unfortunately.Hydration and Muscle Performance weight-loss techniques were frequently uncontrolled and undocumented.g.2). Although dehydration frequently accounted for some mass loss in this research.[30-32] Methodologically. the isolated effect of hydration cannot be evaluated.[50] power[44. several studies examining muscular strength. cannot isolate the effects of hypohydration from the performance-reducing effects of increased core temperature. likely provides a greater fluid reserve to defend against hypohydration-induced alterations of total body water. many studies employed dehydration techniques causing muscular fatigue (primarily exercise). including endurance training. Independent of hydration.30. power or high-intensity endurance in women. It appears that any condition (nutritional or physiological) that increases total body water.44-46] None of these studies.44] For example. however. Clearly. investigations that tested subjects without allowing full recovery cannot separate the effects of hypohydration from the performancereducing effects of muscle fatigue.15. vertical jump height will increase as total body water decreases because the jumper must move less body mass. if hypohydration fails to reduce muscle force or power. however.[37. Results of studies examining isolated hypohydration on endurance-trained athletes[41-43] have rarely demonstrated physiologically or statistically significant hypohydration-induced reductions of maximal muscular performance (see sections 2. Schoffstall et al. but tested subjects before they adequately cooled.33.[48. Similarly. further supporting the conclusions of Caterisano et al. some authors failed to recognise the physiological divergence separating weight loss from hypohydration and.

1 by using diuretics to reduce total body water (understanding the unique physiological stresses of diuretic-induced hypohydration[64]). 37 (10) .Judelson et al. but authors must acknowledge the potential influence of the menstrual cycle on fluid balance. In using these latter techniques.4 Ecological Validity and Best Practices for Future Research Understanding the isolated effects of hypohydration on strength. subjects must perform against consistent workloads in all trials.[40. would largely result from psychological rather than physiological mechanisms. caloric restriction or increased core temperature). but this topic also merits attention due to high ecological validity. 1. future investigations must consider the time duration between a physiologically stressful dehydration protocol and the outcome performance measure(s). This requirement eliminates tests that rely primarily on the subject moving his or her body mass (e. This material is the copyright of the original publisher. euhydrated one repetition maximum or percentage of euhydrated body mass). Effects of Hypohydration on Muscular Performance Tables I–III comprehensively summarise the results from studies that cannot be evaluated solely in Sports Med 2007. Several authors hypothesised that subjects accustomed to hypohydration (typically wrestlers) demonstrate insignificant performance alterations due to their familiarity with the characteristic physiological stresses. While some populations experience the stress of hypohydration combined with another factor (e. future research must recognise the following three vital components of appropriate research design: (i) dehydration technique. In terms of outcome measures.[65-67] the overnight rest period drastically reduces the effects of the dehydration procedures on subsequent outcome measures. To account for possible influences of subject selection. future studies should attempt to maximise the homogeneity of their subjects’ endurance training background.g.[16. Training athletes who fail to adequately rehydrate during or immediately after an initial exercise bout[1-6] might initiate subsequent exercise bouts in a hypohydrated state. and (iii) research examining isolated hypohydration published after the presentation of this hypothesis (in the early 1980s) demonstrated significantly reduced muscular performance in individuals with a history of rapid body mass loss. While data collection might properly occur during any phase of the menstrual cycle. however. but the hours between exercise limit the stress of increased core temperature or fatigue. the subjects’ history of exercising while hypohydrated has also received attention as a potential confounding variable. such as astronauts and the elderly. Unauthorised copying and distribution is prohibited. Our laboratory typically dehydrates subjects via lowintensity exercise in the heat the evening prior to a morning data collection. fatigue. 910 and obscures the effects of hypohydration on muscle function. 1.[62. multiple groups regularly experience only hypohydration. Sufficient time must separate dehydration from performance to allow core temperature to stabilise and fatigue to dissipate. (i) all subjects should be tested during a common phase. increased muscle temperature and fatigue) and masking (endurance training. power and high-intensity endurance is important from a basic science perspective. (ii) subject population. Other groups that require peak muscle function for health and safety.3 Other Potential Influences In addition to the primary exacerbating (caloric restriction.63] Given the importance of determining the effect of isolated hypohydration on high-intensity muscle  2007 Adis Data Information BV. Hypohydration can (and should) be studied in female populations. and (ii) all data collection for repeated measures studies (the most appropriate to eliminate the effects of the dehydration protocol) must occur during the same menstrual phase. (ii) this effect.61] function. 2. and (iii) performance measures.60] Subjects’ history of hypohydration is not considered an important influence in the present review because (i) no scientific literature documents a physiological adaptation to hypohydration. also frequently experience hypohydration. exercise and heat exposure are useful methods to dehydrate subjects. Scientists can completely avoid the dehydration methods described in section 1.g.g. vertical jump or short distance sprinting) and mandates that performance workloads are based upon euhydrated subject characteristics (e. menstrual status and test type) factors. if present. All rights reserved.

4% ↑ knee extension strength UMS This material is the copyright of the original publisher.4% ↓ L knee extension strength ETS 2.6% 5. 37 (10) .[52] 4.4% 11.[44] Guastella et al.[35] –4.[45] –4.4% via S –4.6% 8.[57] ≈–4.0% ↓ in handgrip strength Temperature 0.Hydration and Muscle Performance 911 Table I. All rights reserved.9% 4.3% ↓ knee extension strength at 30°/sec* 11.7% ↓ L elbow flexion strength ETS 0.5% 6.5% 7.[33] –2.9% via C Viitasalo et al.[52] Kraemer et al.1% 8.7% 7.8% via S Montain et al.2% ↑ R knee extension strength ETS 0.[72] –3.5% ↓ knee extension strength at 180°/sec* Moore et al.2% 7.0% ∆ elbow extensor strength Temperature 7.8% via E-S –4.0% 11.2% 4.8% via E ´ Gutierrez et al. Studies with exacerbating factors –1.4% 5. Effects of hypohydration on muscular strength Study Dehydration Studies with masking factors –2.6% 6.9% 6.5% 2.9% 10.7% 0.[69] Webster et al.9% ↑ L knee extension strength ETS 2.5% ↑ R knee extension strength ETS –3.5% via C Bijlani and Sharma[68] Viitasalo et al.5% via WD Bosco et al.9% 15.3% ↓ strength to mass ratio BMB Evetovich et al.7% 6.8% via C ≈–6% via C 10.0% via E-H 2.[73] –5.9% via WD 3. Unauthorised copying and distribution is prohibited.4% 1.8% ↑ L elbow flexion strength ETS 4.4% ↓ isometric forearm flexion strength UMS 2.4% 9.2% ↓ grip strength 11.8% ↓ knee extension strength* Temperature 2.1% ↓ isokinetic forearm flexion strength UMS Saltin[41] –3.3% ↑ R elbow flexion strength ETS 2.9% 3.1% 2.2% via C Houston et al.7% ↑ R elbow flexion strength ETS 0.9% ↓ in row strength Temperature 0.2% ↓ ↓ ↓ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↓ ↑ ↓ ↓ ↓ ↓ ↓ ↓ ↓ ↓ ↓ ↑ ↓ ↑ ↓ ↓ ↓ knee extension strength at 300°/sec* knee extension strength at 180°/sec* R knee extension strength – fast R knee extension strength – slow R knee flexion strength – fast R knee flexion strength – slow L knee extension strength – fast L knee extension strength – slow L knee flexion strength – fast L knee flexion strength – slow chest press strength – fast chest press strength – slow* chest row strength – fast chest row strength – slow shoulder push strength – fast shoulder push strength – slow shoulder pull strength – fast shoulder pull strength – slow* knee extension strength* hip/back strength grip strength* bear hug strength knee extension strength at 0°/sec knee extension strength at 60°/sec knee extension strength at 300°/sec* CR CR CR CR Temperature CR CR CR CR CR CR CR CR CR CR CR CR CR CR CR CR CR CR CR CR CR CR CR Continued next page  2007 Adis Data Information BV.[50] Resultsa Primary factorb 5.0% via E-H –3.8% via E-H 0.5% 8. Sports Med 2007.

[46] Temperature. UMS = uncontrolled menstrual status. Each table is divided into the following three sections: (i) research with masking factors (i. b Primary factor refers to the variable preventing an isolated analysis of the effects of hypohydration on muscular performance. upper and total body musculature separately. ↓ indicates decrement. ∆ indicates change.[60] UWL Singer and Weiss[77] UWL Tuttle[78] UWL.[40.60. fatigue. Results obtained from references[33. 37 (10) . 2. whenever possible.39. and (iii) research that cannot be interpreted based on acknowledged limitations of research design (e. R = right.50. magnifying hypohydration effects). * p < 0. L = left. (ii) research with exacerbating factors (i.68-71] or uncontrolled carbohydrate intake[44] during the rehydration.52.[38] No euhydrated baseline Greenleaf et al. H = heat exposure (36–41°C). WD = water deprivation. E = exercise. Similar to tables I–III.57] estimated from figures. CR = caloric restriction. respectively.[79] No euhydrated baseline.[76] UWL Serfass et al.9% ↓ 8. these figures contain information relating only to initial dehydration and ignore subsequent rehydration. presenting investigations that examined the effect of hypohydration on muscular strength (table I).50. the context of hypohydration. attenuating hypohydration effects).37. Figures 1–3 display the results of the 11 published.[10] Protocols used to evaluate strength typically measured single maximal effort Sports Med 2007. C = combination dehydration techniques.1 Strength Table I and figure 1 present the effects of hypohydration on muscular strength (the maximal force a muscle or muscle group can generate at a specified velocity).3% ↓ 11.8% ↓ 2.Judelson et al.e.g.5% ↓ knee flexion strength at 60°/sec knee flexion strength at 300°/sec* elbow flexion strength at 0°/sec elbow flexion strength at 60°/sec elbow flexion strength at 300°/sec elbow extension strength at 60°/sec elbow extension strength at 300°/sec Primary factorb CR CR CR CR CR CR CR Studies difficult to interpret Ahlman and Karvonen[70] Learning effect Bell et al.61. UWL = uncontrolled weight loss.60. Single publications appear in multiple sections and on different tables if the methodology included several different dehydration techniques. All rights reserved.[74] UWL Ftaiti et al. Unauthorised copying and distribution is prohibited. power (table II) and high-intensity endurance (table III). results from similar muscle groups/actions are juxtaposed for clarity. power (figure 2) and high-intensity endurance (figure 3). ↑ indicates improvement. Contd Study Dehydration Resultsa 6.44- only the initial dehydration was evaluated to eliminate effects of ad libitum food and fluid in 2007 Adis Data Information BV. subject populations or exercise tasks. BMB = body mass based test.52.[44] Temperature.57. and/or combinations of masking and exacerbating factors. lack of description or control of the hypohydration techniques.83] To examine possible muscle specificity.[75] Temperature. ETS Wenos and Amato[59] UWL a Data are shown as percentage change from baseline. 912 Table I. figures 1–3 present findings from lower. fatigue. This material is the copyright of the original publisher.3% ↓ 4. S = sauna exposure (70–85°C).5% ↓ 4. caloric restriction Vallier et al. learning effect). In those studies examining the effects of dehydration and subsequent rehydration. peer-reviewed studies[34. UMS ¨ opik ¨ O et al.58. ETS Greenleaf et al.e.72-79] and findings obtained from references[38. ETS = endurance-trained subjects.68-70. take[55.1% ↓ 2. UMS ´ Gutierrez et al.81-83] that accurately assessed only the effects of hypohydration on muscular strength (figure 1).

E = exercise. All rights reserved.[44] Temperature.[52] CR or temperature. fatigue. Unauthorised copying and distribution is prohibited. CR = caloric restriction. UMS = uncontrolled menstrual status.[35] –5.1% 7. row.9% 1. bear hug.[80] Temperature.72-74. 0.7% 3.[43] Studies difficult to interpret Bell et al.[53] Resultsa Primary factorb –4.1% 2.[52] –4.8% via E ´ Gutierrez et al.5% 2.7% ↑ ↑ ∆ ↑ ↓ ↓ ↓ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↑ ↓ squat jump height countermovement jump height squat jump height countermovement jump height squat jump height countermovement jump height cycling power 50m sprint 200m sprint jump height jumping power jump height* weighted (+20kg) jump height* weighted (+40kg) jump height* weighted (+60kg) jump height weighted (+80kg) jump height cycling power BMB BMB BMB BMB BMB BMB ETS BMB BMB BMB BMB BMB BMB BMB BMB BMB ETS Studies with exacerbating factors –2. shoulder adduction and shoulder extension)  2007 Adis Data Information BV. ∆ indicates change.2% 2.[79] No euhydrated baseline.6% 21. Results obtained from references[35.3% and 3. BMB Fogelholm et al.1% 0. isometric. D = diuretic. shoulder abduction. fatigue Temperature Temperature CR CR Temperature CR CR –1.[52] –2.79. ↑ indicates improvement.5% 16. elbow flexion. BMB King et al.[73] ~–6. ETS = endurance-trained subjects.2% via C Guastella et al. BMB = body mass based test.80] and findings obtained from references[43.5% 2.[44] –1.0% via H Jacobs[56] –3. Fritzsche et al.Hydration and Muscle Performance 913 Table II.1% via E Hoffman et al.[80] –3.2% ↓ ↓ ↓ ↓ ↓ ↓ ↓ ↓ ↓ Wingate peak power cycling peak power knee extension rate of force development* Wingate peak power Wingate peak power cycling power Wingate peak power knee extension rate of force development* jumping power Temperature Temperature. Effects of hypohydration on muscular power Study Dehydration Studies with masking factors –1. 37 (10) .76.9% 8.5% via D This material is the copyright of the original publisher.0% 3.0% 3.g. UWL = uncontrolled weight loss. BMB ´ Gutierrez et al.4% via S Viitasalo et al. S = sauna exposure (70–85°C). grip strength. Numerical analysis supports the division of studies by external influence: the average loss of strength was 2.1% via H Jacobs[56] –4.0% via C 2.42-44. back extension. * p < 0. ETS Viitasalo et al.8% for investigaSports Med 2007. hip flexion.8% via C Viitasalo et al. BMB.5% via D –2.1% 0.51-56. isotonic and/or isokinetic force production of the upper body (e.4% 3.0% via H Jacobs[56] –5.[74] UWL Doscher[54] CR.9% via C Webster et al.[51] –1. elbow extension.3% 4.2% via E-H 3.2% via D Viitasalo et al.3%.8% via E-H –2.8% 0. UMS Jacobs[56] Temperature.0% 4. BMB a Data are shown as percentage change from baseline. forearm flexion. bench press. and lower body (e. H = heat exposure (30–56°C). C = combination dehydration techniques. b Primary factor refers to the variable preventing an isolated analysis of the effects of hypohydration on muscular performance. ETS ¨ opik ¨ O et al.05.9% 3.3% 19.2% 7. ↓ indicates decrement. knee extension and knee flexion).0% via E-H King et al.g.[76] UWL Vallier et al.[55] CR.0% 1.1% 1.0% 0.[52] Kraemer et al.8% via H Walsh et al.53] estimated from figures.[42] Watson et al.[72] –4.

6% 1.0% via H Studies with exacerbating factors –2.[84] No specific muscle group or action appears more susceptible to hypohydration.5% via D –3. CR = caloric restriction.7% via C Fogelholm et al.9% –5. more than two-thirds of uninfluenced results show negative effects.2 Power Table II and figure 2 present the effects of hypohydration on muscular power (the power generated when a muscle engages in a maximal concentric Sports Med 2007. ETS Klinzing and Karpowicz[58] CR.51.[57] CR.2% 8.0% via E-H Jacobs[56] Guastella et al.[35] Jacobs[56] –4.[55] Resultsa Primary factorb 16. 37 (10) . the rarity of statistical significance is not surprising considering the small sample sizes (mean sample size of uninfluenced studies = ten) and sometimes insufficiently sensitive testing modalities. vergent results sometimes occur for the same muscle (e. * p < 0. BMB a Data are shown as percentage change from baseline.8% via E Watson et al.57] estimated from figures. Bijlani and Sharma[68] King et al. fatigue Temperature CR CR Temperature This material is the copyright of the original publisher. BMB King et al. ↓ indicates decrement.g. Results obtained from references[35.68. All rights reserved. BMB = body mass based test.0% via H Jacobs[56] –2. b Primary factor refers to the variable preventing an isolated analysis of the effects of hypohydration on muscular performance.5% 3.8% 15. tions with no factors (i. Effects of hypohydration on muscular endurance (activities >30 seconds and <2 minutes) Study Dehydration Studies with masking factors –1.72.[80] –3. as di 2007 Adis Data Information BV. respectively.e. H = heat exposure (40–58°C). Only 15 of the 70 total findings (21%) showed statistically significant performance reductions.2% –4.[80] Temperature. BMB Houston et al. fatigue Temperature.7% 9.8% 3.3% 31. 914 Table III. fatigue Temperature.05. masking factors and exacerbating factors.1% via E Hoffman et al. ↑ indicates improvement. Given the relatively small effect of hypohydration. Unauthorised copying and distribution is prohibited. BMB Jacobs[56] Temperature.4% 0.0% 0. knee extension and elbow flexion).5% ↑ ↑ ↑ ↓ ↓ ↓ ↓ ↓ ↓ ↓ ↓ average power during 30 sec Wingate average power during 1 min Wingate 1 (of 2) average power during 1 min Wingate 2 (of 2) elbow extensor endurance* cycling work in 45 sec* cycling power at end of 45 sec cycling fatigue index average power during 30 sec Wingate average power during 30 sec Wingate cycling work in 40 sec* average power during 30 sec Wingate Temperature CR CR Temperature Temperature. ∆ indicates change.80] and findings obtained from references[53.[39] –2. ETS = endurance-trained subjects. 2.71.8% 10.7% 0.1% –4. those assessing only isolated hypohydration). C = combination dehydration techniques.[51] Caterisano et al.0% via E-H –3.5% 7.[53] –1.2% 1.[74] UWL Doscher[54] CR.53-59. suggesting that 3–4% hypohydration reduces muscular strength by approximately 2%. E = exercise.2% ↓ ↓ ↓ ↓ ↓ ∆ ↓ ↑ jumping power during 30 sec test jumps in 30 sec average jump height during 30 sec test jumping power during 30 sec test jumps in 30 sec average jump height during 30 sec test 400m sprint knee extension endurance BMB BMB BMB BMB BMB BMB BMB ETS 0. Although some variability exists.3% 0.2% 4.39. fatigue.0% via via via via H C C H Studies difficult to interpret Bell et al.2% 10.5% 0.Judelson et al. UWL = uncontrolled weight loss.74.[72] Webster et al. D = diuretic. BMB Mnatzakanian and Undefined weight loss Vaccaro[71] Wenos and Amato[59] UWL.

[52] (c). Sports Med 2007.[52] (u). Viitasalo et al.g. but the current literature suggests that 3–4% hypohydration reduces muscular power by approximately 3%.[50] (a.[34] (b and k). 2.8% and –7. * p < 0. o. 37 (10) .[81] (d. Non-confounded effects of hypohydration on muscular strength. 1. p and q). 2006. h. Yoshida et al. Bosco et al. j. +1.[51. Numerical analysis again supports the division of studies based on the type of external influence: the average change in power was –3.55] all of these studies examined power via lower body exercise (e. e. masking factors and exacerbating factors. eliminating an analysis of muscle specificity.[40] (i).[36] (q–t) [estimated from figures]. m. Data are presented as mean percentage change from baseline. and Viitasalo et al. Unfortunately. Results from: Bosco et al.3 High-Intensity Endurance Table III and figure 3 present the effects of hypohydration on high-intensity muscular endurance. n. Data are presented as mean percentage change from baseline. i–m). the 21 results shown in figure 2 come from only four investigations. r and s) [estimated from figures]. Bigard et al. Except for two investigations examining short-distance sprinting.7% for investigations with no factors.05. and Schoffstall et al.[82] (f and g). Greiwe et al.[10] Appropriate protocols used to evaluate peak power typically measured performance during maximal intensity cycling and maximal knee extension (rate of force development).Hydration and Muscle Performance Muscular strength (%) 15 915 Lower body Total body Upper body Lower body a–g: Knee extension h: Leg extension 10 5 Upper body i: Bench press j–m: Elbow flexion n–o: Handgrip p–q: Shoulder extension r: Trunk extension s: Composite score 0 –5 * * –10 * i j k l mn o p q r ab c d e f gh –15 s Fig. This material is the copyright of the original publisher.[61] (a–e.05. respectively. Non-confounded effects of hypohydration on muscular power.[37] (f–h. 2. Cheuvront et al. jumping or cycling). All rights reserved. Results from: Smith et al. Figure 2 displays some variability (more in magnitude than direction) and uninfluenced findings require replication in future studies. Unauthorised copying and distribution is prohibited. Nine of the 47 total findings (19%) showed statistically significant performance reductions. l. * p < 0.  2007 Adis Data Information BV. personal communication). n–p).2%. Studies with masking factors that used body mass based tests further corroborate the power-reducing effect of hypohydration: in 8 of 15 cases. one of which was published only in abstract form[61] (complete details of this research were obtained from the author of the abstract: Smith SA. action at the optimal shortening velocity). the per- centage increase in performance failed to match the percentage decrease in body mass. Appropriate protocols used to evaluate highintensity endurance typically measured total work (number of repetitions) or average power maintained during 30–120 seconds of repeated activities 20 Lower body Muscular power (%) 15 10 5 0 –5 –10 –15 –20 * * * * * Lower body a–h: 10–15s Wingate Test peak power i–t: 10–15s Wingate Test average power u: Knee extension rate of force development * * a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u Fig.

Regardless. The (i) detrimental effects of body water loss on traditional endurance exercises. visual evidence supports a greater effect in the lower body than the upper body. Non-confounded effects of hypohydration on high-intensity muscular endurance (activities lasting >30 seconds but <120 seconds). This material is the copyright of the original publisher.9] support this hypothesis. and Torranin et al. Division of studies based on external influence is less numerically convincing for this variable: the average loss of endurance was 15. however. personal or public safety.Judelson et al. 916 Muscular endurance (%) 40 30 Lower body Total body Upper body Lower body a–d: Knee extension 20 Upper body e: Elbow flexion f: Sit-ups 10 0 –10 –20 –30 –40 * a Total body g: Total body isometric h: Total body isotonic * b c d e f * g * h Fig.2) might explain the altered quantitative relationship among influences. elbow flexions. and (ii) direct relationship between the magnitude of hypohydration-induced performance decrement and exercise duration[7.0%. 3. Bigard et al.05. shoulder abductions.[82] (d). Greiwe et al.1 and 3. The relative importance of 2–3% reductions in strength and peak power. statistically significant reductions noted in the uninfluenced studies suggest that hypohydration detrimentally affects high-intensity muscular endurance. Little variability exists in figure 3. Statistically significant reductions in performance occurred in 7 of the 27 results (26%). see sections 3. 2. The smaller total pool of results (only 27 compared with 70 for strength and 47 for power) and/or the physiological differences separating high-intensity muscular endurance from strength and power (as endurance relies more heavily on cardiovascular function and muscle metabolism. and overall well-being. (bench presses. knee flexions. knee extensions. 2000 and 2004 Olympic Games indicate the gold medalist in the 100m dash defeated the eighth place finisher by an average of only 3%. military operations and civil servant activities (e.[39] (a and b). 37 (10) . police and fire personnel) when participants strive to maximise performance for personal satisfaction. Sports Med 2007. All rights reserved. Decrements in peak strength and power also affect non-elite athletic events. is less clear. rows. masking factors and exacerbating factors. Results from: Caterisano et al. high-intensity cycling tasks were also evaluated. These effects are unlikely to affect the casual resistance exerciser attempting to maintain health and reduce risk of disease.  2007 Adis Data Information BV.g. A 10% reduction in high-intensity endurance performance produces clear decrements in exercise outcome.[83] (g and h). Unauthorised copying and distribution is prohibited. 6. shoulder adductions and/or situps).4 Comparisons and Relevance of Conclusions The previous conclusions suggest that hypohydration attenuates the performance of highintensity endurance to a much greater degree than strength and power exercises.7% and 5. suggesting that 3–4% hypohydration reduces high-intensity muscular endurance by approximately 10%. elbow extensions. * p < 0.[81] (f).6% for studies with no factors.[34] (c and e). but small reductions in exercise performance significantly affect the outcome of athletic competitions when vanishingly small differences separate winning from losing. however. the consistent.[84] For example. results from the 1996. respectively. the small number of results supporting this hypothesis makes this conclusion tentative. chin-ups. Bosco et al. Data are presented as mean percentage change from baseline.

g. endurance Isometric strength.37.40. Realistically.80] examined multiple degrees of hypohydration. very few of these studies exist.1 Cardiovascular Mechanisms During endurance exercise. –1.[39] Cheuvront et al. power Power masking or exacerbating factor and four[38.[52] Yoshida et al. 3. Nine published studies[36.1–2.43.38. Given the small number of uninfluenced results upon which the previous conclusions are largely based.[36] Dehydration method Sauna Water deprivation Water deprivation Heat Heat Sauna Sauna Combination Sauna Diuretic Exercise Degree of hypohydration (%) –3. increasing submaximal heart rates and decreasing Sports Med 2007. Methodological details of the non-confounded studies examining muscular strength. Of the studies evaluated in this review. Mode of dehydration.50.52.61] endurance[34. –2. Research examining the same subjects completing the same exercise bouts at multiple hypohydrated states most effectively analyses the effect of degree of hypohydration.0 –2. All rights reserved. many of the deleterious effects of hypohydration result from altered cardiovascular function.[37] Greiwe et al.43.or post-dehydration) with any physiological measurement other than body mass (e.[34. the limited data available from studies that accurately documented the effects of only hypohydration (strength.[50] Caterisano et al. the inconsistent results described in sections 2.[82] Bosco et al.39.1 –3.[36.25. especially to ensure hydration indices indicate that subjects’ baseline body masses represent a euhydrated state.82] power.[61] Torranin et al.9 2. This verification is vital.38] and rate of water loss[16.Hydration and Muscle Performance 917 Table IV. several reasons justify the intentional exclusion. mode of dehydration interacts with degree of hypohydration to determine the overall magnitude of performance decrement. This material is the copyright of the original publisher. power and high-intensity endurance? Unfortunately.81.5 –0. especially in a hot environment.50] lack a major  2007 Adis Data Information BV. but only two[36. Without the physiological verification that baseline body mass truly represents euhydration. Instead. endurance Isotonic strength Power Endurance Isometric strength.5 Important Considerations Variable(s) assessed Isometric strength.[34] Schoffstall et al.[14-16.[64] Presumably. our current state of knowledge results from a basic understanding of exercise physiology and information gleaned from studies examining hypohydration and endurance performance.[83] Viitasalo et al. unfortunately. 37 (10) .25.50.9 and –4. Hypohydration reduces total plasma volume.64] degree of hypohydration[16.7 –3.5 and –3.7 –2. Potential Mechanisms of Hypohydration How might hypohydration negatively influence strength.5 and –3.53. endurance Isometric strength Endurance Power Isometric strength. Despite their importance. Evidence from an endurance model clearly suggests that the technique used to dehydrate subjects affects subsequent performance outcomes and fluid biocompartmentation. 3. power and high-intensity endurance Study Bigard et al.[81] Bosco et al.7.79] accurately documented hydration status.81-83]) fail to provide a suitable number of data points to accurately or reliably evaluate the relationship between degree of hypohydration and change of muscle function.52. comparing the effects of different dehydration methods and degrees of hypohydration becomes difficult (this information is provided for the uninfluenced studies in table IV).33.53.79.[40] Smith et al. The previous analysis omits three obviously relevant variables.56.52.3 have precluded an extensive analysis of the hypohydration mechanism.8 –1.7 –4.85] likely alter the physiological response to hypohydration.0 –2. approximately half verified hydration status (pre.0 –5.38.5 –3.7. Unauthorised copying and distribution is prohibited.77. the degree of hypohydration post-dehydration cannot be quantified nor can the relationship between the magnitude of hypohydration and decrement in muscle function be assessed. A surprising lack of scientific evidence documenting hydration status further complicates this assessment. urine specific gravity or plasma osmolality).

2 Metabolic Mechanisms Similar to cardiovascular mechanisms.Judelson et al.[86. 918 maximal cardiac output.43. but these factors appear unlikely to cause decrements in high-intensity muscular performance.96] rather than a physiological effect of hypohydration on lactate production. however.64. during high-intensity endurance performance.14. changes of muscle blood flow due to water loss can decrease nutrient delivery. Unauthorised copying and distribution is prohibited.36.[99] prolonged dehydration procedures might lead to glycogen depletion and subsequently reduced lactate production during performance testing.[90-92] suggesting that hypohydration might fundamentally disturb metabolism to affect even the briefest exercises. the vast majority demonstrate that hypohydration either failed to change[43.80] and bicarbonate[82] after exercise. Optimal cellular functioning requires maintenance of appropriate internal pH. no matter how brief.69. however. decrease metabolite removal and alter cellular metabolism.97] Actual evidence examining muscle and blood. the dehydration protocols frequently stress subjects. In many cases.3 Buffering Mechanisms A third hypothesis proposes that hydration state affects the acid-base balance of the body.[13.97.83] Although altered lipid metabolism has been suggested as a possible mechanism explaining the effect of hypohydration on maximal muscle activity. decreased lactate production might occur secondary to dehydration-induced reductions of glycogen stores. or uptake. the physiology of maximal performance suggests that decreased cardiovascular function cannot account for reduced strength and power. 3.82.[80. Further research is required to ascertain the effects of hypohydration on lipid and protein metabolism during exercise.[14. causing several researchers to suggest that hydration influences performance by reducing buffer capacity. however. the collective evidence suggests that isolated hypohydration does not directly alter lactate kinetics or carbohydrate metabolism. is unclear. require adequate delivery of oxygen to and removal of metabolic by-products from the active musculature.83] Because repetitive exercises.72. Additionally.[76.56. All rights reserved. albeit limited. the reduced blood lactate was hypothesised to result from decreased work rate or work time.[93] On the other hand.[25] Closer inspection of basic physiology.80] postexercise lactate. Brief strength and power production occurs essentially independent of the cardiovascular system because these exercises do not require peak cardiac output and largely rely upon stored intramuscular adenosine triphosphate (ATP) and creatine phosphate (CP) for energy.76.76.45] or circulating concentrations of blood glucose.93] or decreased[41. the physiology of maximal performance suggests only a limited role for muscle metabolism in reducing muscle function. efflux.[36] Thus. demonstrated no hypohydration-induced changes of internal pH[69. This material is the copyright of the original publisher. as all data demonstrating reduced post-exercise lactate resulted from subjects who either restricted caloric intake or increased their core temperature (each of which promotes glycogen depletion) during dehydration. refutes the possibility that hypohydration fundamentally changes intramuscular stores of ATP and CP[13.83] lactate with hypohydration.[13. however. stimulating the sympathetic nervous system. metabolic and buffering) appear insufficient to exSports Med 2007.81] Greater controversy exists over the effect of hypohydration on post-exercise circulating lactate concentrations. reductions of muscle blood flow might assume greater importance in dictating performance reductions. not because hypohydration fundamentally affects carbohydrate metabolism. 3.[93-95] the majority of scientific attention and evidence examines potential changes of carbohydrate metabolism. Although little research examining hypohydration and muscular performance documents these variables.[30.14.89] The degree to which these cardiovascular alterations affect strength and power.[13.87] Further. Experimental evidence.98] This final possibility explains many findings.45] The importance of cardiovascular changes might increase. 37 (10) . This ‘fight or flight’ response promotes glycogenolysis.14. especially for strength and power. therefore.4 Neuromuscular Mechanisms The three previous mechanisms (cardiovascular.[13. although one study[51] showed increased  2007 Adis Data Information BV.51.15. acid-base balance is unlikely to represent the mechanism for hypohydration.[88. 3. shows that hydration-induced changes in cell volume strongly influence cellular metabolism.

Weight loss and diet in wrestling. Phys Sportsmed 1978. Maughan RJ. J Appl Sports Sci Res 1987. Horswill CA. 37 (10) . Boudou P. Inc. Ribisl PM. JAMA 1967. the literature currently lacks a well designed study evaluating the effect of hydration state on a sensitive marker of central drive (e. 14: 333-46 6.36.81. Changes in several plasma and urinary components in marathon runners.45. 8: xi-xiii 12. Spiering for editorial contributions. Terminology and measurement in exercise performance. 919 Acknowledgements No funding sources were used in the preparation of this manuscript. It is more likely that the infrequently reported reductions in strength following hypohydration are due to a diminished ability of the central nervous system to recruit motor units”. When wrestlers shed pounds quickly. to clarify the mechanism of these effects. Although further work remains to be completed. American College of Sports Medicine. J Sports Sci 2001. et al. Pitts GC. Oppliger RA. 20: 719-24 3. Position stand on weight loss in wrestlers. Latzka WA.[14.53. Shirreffs SM. Many others similarly claimed that the loss of total body water affects some component of the neuromuscular system.Hydration and Muscle Performance plain the effects of hydration on strength. Fluid balance and endurance performance. Voluntary dehydration and alliesthesia for water.  2007 Adis Data Information BV. Int J Sport Nutr Exerc Metab 2004.75. Knuttgen HG. Hydration effects on thermoregulation and performance in the heat. Cheuvront SN. Curr Sports Med Rep 2003. 3: 245-60 16. Consolazio FC. Sports Med 1994. J Am Diet Assoc 1988. the importance of neuromuscular alterations in mediating hypohydration-induced decrements of muscle function cannot be accurately assessed. Wrestling and weight control. 6: 212-24 22. 1: 1-10 11. Matthew WT. Until this gap in the literature is filled. Kraemer WJ. American Medical Association. et al.52. 19: 845-54 7. 142: 253-9 5. power and high-intensity endurance. 37: 131-9 17. Douglas J. The Iowa Wrestling study: lessons for physicians. 88: 491-3 23. Iowa Med 1984. Casa serves on the Board of Advisors. Case S. Weight loss and weight cycling in amateur wrestlers: implications for performance and resting metabolic rate. test selection and subject population have been accounted for. Fluid and electrolyte intake and loss in elite soccer players during training. very little scientific evidence evaluates these hypotheses. Sports Med 1992. Pediatr Exerc Sci 1994. Oppliger RA. power and high-intensity endurance. 74 (9): 381-5 19.79. military and industrial settings. leaving a fourth possibility. 57: 868-73 4. Sawka MN. Montain SJ. Comp Biochem Physiol A Mol Integr Physiol 2001. 128: 679-90 9. Horswill CA. The authors wish to thank Dr Sinclair A. Med Sci Sports Exerc 1976. Weight loss in adolescent wrestlers. Am J Physiol 1944. American College of Sports Medicine Position Stand: weight loss in wrestlers. Cheuvront SN. twitch interpolation or central activation ratio).[100. Johnson RE. Phys Sportsmed 1974. Sargent F. Greenleaf JE. Physiologic problems associated with the ‘making of weight’. Sandick BL. After considering the important external factors. Am J Sports Med 1980.83] Unfortunately. Int J Sport Nutr 1993. All rights reserved. Laureaux C. Fiet J. Yarrows SA. Ad libitum fluid intakes and thermoregulatory responses of female distance runners in three environments. et al. Sawka MN. Fogelholm M. Smith for his exceptional helpfulness and Dr Barry A.82] and research examining the effect of hypohydration on muscle membrane excitability clearly argues against this hypothesis. Ann Biol Clin 1987. Wrestling with ‘making weight’. Tipton CM. 45: 37-45 2. and explore interrelationships with key modulators such as the degree of hypohydration and mode of dehydration. Conclusions When the masking and exacerbating influences of dehydration procedure.g. Carter R. Voluntary dehydration in man. 4. References 1. Haymes EM. Sports Med 2007. this critical review of the available literature suggests hypohydration is an important factor to consider when attempting to maximise muscular performance in athletic. Hansen NC. 8: 449-50 20. Tolly SE.43. Lopez R. J Appl Physiol 1984.75. Keller HL. Tipton CM. 2: 202-8 10. 63: S14-21 8. 2: 30-5 18. 201: 131-3 13. Phys Educator 1980. 18: 249-67 15. as stated by Coyle and Hamilton:[24] “It is unlikely that moderate reductions in muscle water alter force generation capability or energy production when maximally stimulated. Broad NP. The importance of good hydration for work and exercise performance. 28: ix-xii This material is the copyright of the original publisher. et al. Weight loss through dehydration in amateur wrestlers. Hubbard RW. Horswill CA. Nutr Rev 2005. Unauthorised copying and distribution is prohibited. future research should aim to elucidate the magnitude of hypohydration effects. has received grant funding and honoraria from Gatorade and has received honoraria from Camelbak. Freedson PS.101] Although altered neuromuscular function is an appealing hypothesis. Work in the heat as affected by intake of water. Electromyographic data collected during maximal contractions are limited and inconclusive. salt and glucose.42. Med Sci Sports Exerc 1996. Applied physiology of amateur wrestling. Effects of bodyweight reduction on sports performance. hypohydration appears to negatively influence muscular strength. 6: 105-11 21. 14: 114-43 14. Merson SJ. J Appl Physiol 1965.[33.

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