In the Gatorade Beat the Heat program's 13th year, the brand has teamed up with top professional athletes, league partners, including the NFL, MLB and NBA, and social influencers in an effort to raise awareness among youth athletes, parents and coaches on how proper hydration can help reduce heat-related illness during athletic activity, especially during the hot summer months. This year's campaign will comprise of educational activations centered around six key markets – Chicago, Houston, Miami, New York, Los Angeles and Tampa Bay - including youth camp experiences as well as athlete and social influencer integrations.
"Through the Beat the Heat program and with the help of our partners, we are able to educate athletes, parents and coaches about the importance of proper hydration and what safety measures to consider while active in the heat," Jeff Kearney, Senior Director of Global Sports Marketing. "As a sports culture so focused on statistics, often times we forget how much of an impact hydration has on our performance and therefore those results."
Throughout the summer, Gatorade will have professional athletes visit youth sports camps to tell their own heat safety stories. In addition, top athletes J.J. Watt, Karl-Anthony Towns, April Ross and D'Angelo Russell will demonstrate the importance of heat safety and hydration as they battle the hot summer conditions in unique athletic situations shared on Gatorade's YouTube page.
To better educate the public on heat safety, Gatorade will pair pro athletes with social influencers during sweat inducing activities to showcase the importance of hydration. Additionally, the program will dynamically deliver real-time and relevant heat education to consumers across multiple media platforms.
"It's critical for athletes, coaches, parents and trainers to know the warning signs of dehydration and heat illness and consistently monitor for these symptoms, especially in the hot summer months," said Dr. James Carter, Director of the Gatorade Sports Science Institute (GSSI). "Sweat is comprised of more than just water, so sports drinks that contain electrolytes help to effectively retain and regulate fluids. Additionally, the consumption of carbohydrates found in sports drinks can help an athlete's performance."
Research shows that dehydration or poor hydration can impair performance and increase the risk for heat illness.i To minimize the risk of fluid imbalances, athletes should take frequent hydration breaks, preferably in the shade where possible, and monitor for symptoms of heat illness which may include nausea, headache, fatigue, rapid heart rate or shortness of breath.