Fluid requirements of athletes, workers, and military personnel depend on the nature and intensity of the activity, the duration of the activity, and the ambient temperature and humidity. Total sweat losses for athletes in various sports can range from 200 to 300 mL/hour to 2,000 mL/hour or more (Convertino et al. 1996; Horswill 1998; Cox et al. 2002; Coyle 2004). Most recommendations on fluid consumption for athletes are concerned with matching fluid replacement to fluid losses during the training session or competition to minimize the detrimental effects of dehydration on athletic performance (Convertino et al. 1996; Horswill 1998; Coris et al. 2004; Coyle 2004). Depending on the nature of the sport or training session, the ease of providing fluid, and the comfort of the athlete with respect to content of the gastrointestinal tract, fluid intake during exercise is often only a fraction (e.g., one-half) of the volume lost, and losses of 2% of body weight or more might occur during an exercise session in spite of fluid consumption during the session (Convertino et al. 1996; Cox et al. 2002; Coris et al. 2004; Coyle 2004).

Total daily fluid consumption by athletes generally is not reported; for many athletes, it is probably on the order of 5% of body weight (50 mL/ kg/day) or more to compensate for urinary and respiratory losses as well as sweat losses. For example, Crossman (2003) described a professionally prepared diet plan for a major league baseball player that includes 26 cups (6.2 L) of water or sports drink on a workout day and 19 cups (4.5 L) on an off-day; this is in addition to 9-11 cups (2.1-2.6 L) of milk, fruit juice, and sports drink with meals and scheduled snacks (total fluid intake of 6.8-8.8 L/day, or 52-67 mL/kg/day for a 132-kg player7). While some players and teams probably use bottled or distilled water, most (especially at the amateur and interscholastic levels) probably use local tap water; also, sports drinks might be prepared (commercially or by individuals) with tap water.

The U.S. Army’s policy on fluid replacement for warm-weather training calls for 0.5-1 quart/hour (0.47-0.95 L/hour), depending on the temperature, humidity, and type of work (Kolka et al. 2003; USASMA 2003). In addition, fluid intake is not to exceed 1.5 quarts/hour (1.4 liter/hour) or 12 quarts/day (11.4 L/day). The Army’s planning factor for individual tap water consumption ranges from 1.5 gallons/day (5.7 L/day) for temperate conditions to 3.0 gallons/day (11.4 L/day) for hot conditions (U.S. Army 1983). Hourly intake can range from 0.21 to 0.65 L depending on the temperature (McNall and Schlegel 1968), and daily intake among physically active individuals can range from 6 to 11 L (U.S. Army 1983, cited by EPA 1997). Nonmilitary outdoor workers in hot or dry climates probably would have similar needs.


The player’s weight was obtained from the 2003 roster of the Cleveland Indians baseball team (http://cleveland.indians.mlb.com).

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