Tips for Athletes
Many donors have questions about the effect of blood donation on their ability to workout or participate on sports teams. Below are answers to frequently asked questions regarding this topic.
Yes, you can give blood safely, just like anyone else in good health. On your donation day, avoid strenuous, muscular activity such as lifting or pushing for 24-hours after giving blood. Drink an extra four glasses (8-ounces each) of non-alcoholic liquids on the same day. These recommendations are the same for all blood donors.
It's best to relax for a few hours after blood donation. When you give blood, you temporarily lose some body fluids which take several hours for your body to replenish. Strenuous activity could cause dehydration, therefore, if you must practice after donating, take it easy, and if you are scheduled to compete the day of a blood drive, reschedule your donation appointment.
Not at all. After donating, your plasma, red blood cells and platelets are decreased, but only temporarily. Because your body contains more blood than needed, this does not significantly affect your overall strength or ability to perform. Even after blood donation, there are still plenty of red cells that remain. On your donation day, remember to take it easy at practice and drink plenty of fluids. If you must compete on the day of a blood drive, reschedule your donation appointment. It takes approximately 24-hours for your body to replace one unit of blood donated.
Each day, numerous patients at home and around the world need blood. Your one donation can save up to three lives. Blood can be separated into four parts: red cells help patients who have experienced an accident and patients with blood disorders; platelets control bleeding in patients with leukemia and other cancers; plasma helps patients suffering from burns; cryoprecipitate helps patients with hemophilia. These are just a few of the ways blood donors can give those in need a second chance at life. Find out more by visiting the About Blood page. By donating blood regularly, you help ensure that blood is available for military service members when they need it most.