By Grace Ingram
While sweating up a storm can be a satisfying signal of a good workout, when it comes to game day, a competition or just trying to hit a PB, overheating can cause serious issues for your performance and health.
As the body temperature rises due to a hot environment or physical exertion, physiological systems in your body are put under greater strain (1). This means that the body needs to work harder than usual and often stops you from performing at your best.
Top 5 Tips for Staying Cool to Compete
1. Cold water immersion
Research suggests that immersing the whole body in cold water (5-15°C) before competing is the most effective pre-exercise cooling technique. Lowering the body temperature prior to exercising creates a lower ‘baseline’ body temperature, delaying heat exhaustion (2). It should be noted that while pre-cooling significantly improves endurance and intermittent sprint performance it may negatively affect single sprint performance (2).