With only a few months left until the official launch of the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil, excitement has already began to grow. After some less than satisfactory performances from the England football team over the past twelve months, some of us would be forgiven for showing less interest than usual. However, as the months turn into weeks we can expect World Cup fever to hit the entire United Kingdom, with the question on everyone’s lips – can England do it this time round?
Regardless of how well the England team perform, we can be sure of one thing. Brazil’s climate will play a major role in the way that the tournament plays out. The World Cup will be held between June 12th and July 13th, which is the height of the Brazilian winter, but as we may expect, the Brazilian winter is very different from the ice and frost of ours.
Brazil is the world’s fifth biggest country, spanning three timezones and with nearly 3,000 miles from top to bottom. Despite its huge size, the whole country enjoys weather that is generally warmer than most of Europe. Temperatures are expected to float between the mid 20’s and mid 30’s, depending on whether games are being played in the North or the South. However, a major issue for players and fans alike will also be humidity.
Humidity, or the amount of moisture in the air, is expected to reach uncomfortably high levels of between 55% and 99% during the World Cup. The Northern cities are especially bad for humidity, which causes excessive sweating and severely impacts energy levels. Add to this the 90 minutes of intense exercise which makes up a football game, and we can see why hydration will be a massive issue during the World Cup 2014.
NHS guidelines recommend that we drink eight glasses of water every day, but during periods of intense exercise we actually require more. Exercise generates heat in our muscles, and to cool ourselves our bodies produce sweat. High temperatures mean more sweating, but the moisture in humid air means that sweat evaporates more slowly. To combat this, our bodies produce even more sweat, stopping us from overheating but using up a lot of water in the process.
According to the NHS, dehydration can cause fatigue and cramping, as well as diminished mental functioning. It is also the major contributing factor of heat stroke. Because of this, we can expect the England team and many others to make use of mains fed water coolers and chilled drinking fountains, like those on sale here at MIW Office Solutions, during their time in Brazil.
Although a majority of us will be enjoying the football from our living room or the local pub, it is also worth remembering that July is the height of our (admittedly short) summer. 2013 was the ninth warmest summer on record, and this year we can expect temperatures of between 20 and 30 degrees Celsius – luckily without the accompanying humidity of Brazil. In the true spirit of the World Cup, many of us will visit our local parks and football pitches for a kickabout with friends or our local team. However, if you’re expecting to lace up your boots this July, make sure that you stay hydrated.
Many parks and sports fields now feature outdoor drinking fountains and chilled water coolers to combat dehydration during games of sport or warmer periods, so why not plan ahead and find out if your local park has an outdoor drinking fountain like those sold here at MIW?