Goulet, E. D., Mélançon, M. O., & Madjar, K. (2008). Meta-analysis of the effect of exercise-induced dehydration on endurance performance. ACSM 55th Annual Meeting Indianapolis, Presentation Number 2177.

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A meta-analytic approach was used to determine the magnitude and importance of the effect of dehydration on endurance performance. Studies were located via database searches, cross-referencing, and e-mails sent to researchers. Inclusion criteria were: dehydration induced during exercise; fluid replacement given orally; data to calculate percent change in power output, effect size and dehydration level; hydration level in the less-dehydrated control group between + 0.5 to -1% body mass; dehydration level in the more-dehydrated experimental group >1% body mass and >0.5% more than control; equal quantity of carbohydrate administered in control and experimental groups; and performance assessed in compensable exercise-heat stress. A random-effect model was used to determine the standardized effect.

Implication. It was concluded that exercise-induced dehydration equal to or greater than 2% body mass can significantly impair endurance performance in elite and serious athletes striving for personal best times.

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