Date of Award
Master of Science (MS)
Department of Family and Consumer Sciences
Objective: Heat related illness is one of the leading causes of death in high school athletes.
Proper hydration strategies have been shown to decrease heat related illness in college and
professional athletes. However, limited research has been conducted on the hydration habits of
high school athletes. The increase in high school sports participation has put more athletes at
risk for dehydration. The purpose of the study is to investigate the hydration status and impact of
an educational intervention on hydration habits of high school student athletes, by assessing their
current understanding of hydration and monitoring their fluid intake, during practice. There is
limited research on hydration habits of high school non-elite athletes.
Methods: Sixteen female high school tennis players participated in this study. Data was
collected on the players pre/post practice body weight and pre/post water bottle weight, during a
pre-session, post session, and follow-up session. During the pre-session, researchers performed a
series of educational sessions on hydration for the team and coaches. Researchers assessed
hydration knowledge by giving participants replica hydration questionnaires at the beginning and
conclusion of the study. A paired-sample t-test was used to compare differences in average
weight change and percent weight change between the pre-session/post-session and presession/follow-up session. A paired-sample t-test was also used to analyze the average fluid
ounces consumed and percent change in water bottle weight between pre-session/post-session
and pre-session/follow-up session. A paired sample t-test was used to assess the differences
between the pre/post hydration questionnaire, body weight, and fluid intake.
Results: There were no significant differences in (p>0.05) between the pre-session and the postsession in regard to changes in percent body weight change or fluid intake. However, there were
significant differences (p=0.06) in percent body weight change between the pre-session
(0.00±0.50%) and the one-month follow-up session (-1.05 ±0.80%). Drinking habits during the
follow-up session did not appear to be similar to the intervention period. Significant differences
(p= 0.00) were noted between the pre-session (15.87± 6.00oz.) and follow-up session (0.00±
7.40oz.) in ounces of fluid consumed. The researchers found significant differences (p=0.00)
between the percent weight change in water bottles between the pre-session (56.87±11.40oz.)
and the follow-up session (27.25±15.17oz.). The were no significant differences between the
results of the pre/post-hydration questionnaire.
Conclusions: The findings from this study indicated that participants were more aware of their
drinking habits during the invention period. Participants had similar drinking habits and saw less
of a decrease in their post training percent body weight change in the pre-session and post
session. When researchers returned to the site to conduct their one-month follow-up session they
found that participants drinking habits did not resemble the intervention period (pre/post
session). The teams overall fluid consumption had dropped and there were greater decreases in
their post training percent body weight change. There are many factors that could have
influenced these changes in fluid consumption, but more research is needed on hydration status
and the impact of hydration education in high school student athletes.
KEYWORDS: Dehydration, Female Athletes, Weight Loss, Fluid Intake, and Heat Related
Ortiz, Erin, "Hydration Knowledge and Intake in High School Student Athletes" (2019). Theses and Dissertations. 1055.