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New Technology Helps Athletes Prevent Dehydration and Heat-Related Illness

WALTHAM, Mass., Aug. 31 /PRNewswire/ -- With fall sports under way around the country, often in dangerously hot weather conditions, Mobile Sports, Inc. (MSI) today announced the official launch of iHydrate(TM), an innovative iPhone application giving athletes, parents of athletes, coaches, and athletic trainers the tools and information they need to avoid dehydration and other, more serious heat-related illnesses.

"One of the biggest challenges athletes continually face, not just in hot, humid weather, is consuming enough fluids before, during and after sports to maintain proper hydration," says Brooke de Lench, Youth Sports Expert and Editor-in-Chief of the popular youth sports parenting website, and CEO and President of MSI. "iHydrate(TM) is designed to address this important problem," says de Lench.

To help keep athletes of any age not only stay hydrated but avoid the catastrophic risks of heat-related illness or death, iHydrate(TM) is the first iPhone application to:

  • provide the heat index--the apparent temperature on the basis of the current temperature and relative humidity at the user's current location;

  • display the level of heat-illness risk under the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) heat index;

  • allow parents, coaches and athletic trainers to schedule hydration reminders for before, during and after sports; and

  • help facilitate the replacement of fluids lost during sports based on urine color and/or amount of weight lost.

In addition to these tools, iHydrate(TM) includes a helpful reference section, including basic information on dehydration and heat-illness prevention, signs, symptoms and treatment, and the Pre-Season Heat-Acclimatization Guidelines recently issued by the American College of Sports Medicine and seven other medical groups.

Facts about children and heat-illness

  • Exertional heat stroke is the leading cause of preventable non-traumatic exertional sudden death for young athletes in the U.S.

  • Dehydration is common in kids playing sports: Of kids studied at summer sports camps more than 50% were dehydrated and 25 to 30% showed signs of serious dehydration, putting them at increased risk of heat-related illness. Dehydration occurred despite the availability of water and sports drinks, frequent breaks and coaches' encouragement to stay hydrated. Once children were dehydrated, it was nearly impossible for them to catch up.

  • Dehydration can begin when an athlete loses as little as 1 percent of body weight. In a 70-pound child, that is less than 1 pound of weight lost through sweat;

  • Dehydration effects performance: as little as a 2% decrease in body weight from fluid loss (e.g. 1.2 lb for a 60-lb athlete) can lead to a significant decrease in muscular strength and stamina.

"We developed iHydrate(TM) to make it much easier for parents, coaches and athletic trainers to keep kids properly hydrated and avoid dehydration and other more serious forms of heat illness," says de Lench, "by putting new technology - an application in their hands that not only informs them about the risk of heat-related illness in real time, but gives them the tools they need to ensure proper hydration and re-hydration."

"One of the reasons kids don't drink enough fluids before, during and after sports, is that they forget," notes de Lench. "Parents and coaches can use iHydrate(TM) to remind them to drink on a schedule, not just when they are thirsty."

SOURCE Mobile Sports, Inc.
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