To help keep athletes safe during the hot summer months, The Gatorade Co. has partnered with top professional U.S. sports leagues — including the NFL, MLS, MLB and NBA — for the Gatorade Beat the Heat campaign.


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Gatorade kicks off 'Beat the Heat' campaign

June 4th, 2014

CHICAGO – To help keep athletes safe during the hot summer months, The Gatorade Co. has partnered with top professional U.S. sports leagues — including the NFL, MLS, MLB and NBA — for the Gatorade Beat the Heat campaign.

The PepsiCo sport drink division said Wednesday that the educational campaign, now in its 10th year, aims to raise awareness among athletes, parents and coaches of proper hydration to prevent heat-related illnesses during athletic activity.

Gatorade worked with leading experts in hydration and heat safety to create the Gatorade Heat Safety Kit, an educational resource for heat safety tips and advice. The kit provides easy-to-follow recommendations for athletes, parents and coaches to reduce the chances of heat illness.

While dehydration is a risk across all types of youth sports during the hot summer months, research conducted by the Gatorade Sports Science Institute (GSSI) found that as many as 70% of high school football players showed up for practice inadequately hydrated. Also, research shows that dehydration or poor hydration increases the risk for heat illness.

"Athletes often don't understand the amount of fluid they lose from sweating and how important it is to replace those lost fluids during workouts, practices and games," explained Asker Jeukendrup, GSSI global senior director. "The Beat the Heat program gives us and these great partner organizations an opportunity to educate athletes, parents and coaches about the importance of proper hydration and safety measures while practicing and competing in the heat."

The Gatorade Heat Safety Kit will be available for free download on gatorade.com, nfl.com, mlssoccer.com, mlb.com and nba.com.

"You can't change the weather but you can change how you prepare to practice or compete in hot weather," stated Douglas Casa, Ph.D., chief operating officer of the Korey Stringer Institute (KSI), which is located at the University of Connecticut. "Athletes, parents and coaches do not know that heat-related illnesses are largely preventable with appropriate strategies related to hydration, acclimatization, fitness, cooling and practice modifications."

Roberta Anding, sports dietitian for the NFL's Houston Texans, added, "Athletes and coaches on all levels need to pay close attention to the warning signs of heat-related illnesses because safety should not be risked in the name of competition. Drinks that contain electrolytes to help retain and regulate fluids are very important. The major electrolyte lost in sweat is sodium, so if your beverage does not contain sodium, it isn't a sports drink."

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