Whatever type of exercise you do, staying hydrated is key. Having a water bottle to hand is the best way to ensure thirst doesn’t come into the equation during a workout. However, with single-use products heavily frowned upon in this eco-wary age, having a reusable water bottle makes sense.
Water bottles vary considerably, so choosing one can prove a minefield. However, follow these considerations and you’re sure to make the right decision.
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First off, decide what kinds of activities you’ll need to use your water bottle for. This will influence the shape of the bottle, as well as maybe the size and material type. If you’re a runner, you can find water bottles with rounded handles to easily fit into your hand as you sprint. If you go hiking in the hills, a water bottle that fits snugly into your backpack will be a priority, while those exercising in hot weather may prefer water bottles with insulating properties that keep water chilled for hours on end.
Water bottles vary enormously in price, from just a few pounds to much more. Top-of-the-range bottles may come with impressive insulating properties or in-built filters for giving tap water a more natural taste.
Water bottles also come in a wide range of sizes, so choose one that will fit in with your needs. If you’re out walking for a full day, a bottle with a decent capacity will be preferable to ensure you’ve got enough fluids. Gym-goers who have access to a water fountain won’t need a bottle that is as big, as you’ve got the option to fill it up as needed. As well as traditional styles of bottles, you can also get backpack type water containers that hold a large capacity and come with a nozzle for easy access, leaving your hands free.
One of the things you’ll quickly discover is that water bottles come in a range of different materials. Plastic is by far the most ubiquitous option, where you can find a wide variety of affordable bottles in different colours and sizes. Plastic is very durable and lightweight so suitable for many different types of activities. Some reports suggest that chemicals called bisphenol A in plastic can leach into the bottle, so look for one that is BPA free if this concerns you.
Stainless steel is another popular choice of water bottle material. It offers excellent durability although may suffer the odd dent or scratch. They’re a great choice for those looking for a bottle with insulating features, helping to keep beverages ice cold or even hot. Bear in mind that steel water bottles are heavier than plastic ones, so might not be suitable if you’re looking for something very lightweight.
You can also find glass water bottles with slip-resistant silicone sleeves – perfect if you want to keep a check on how much water you’ve got in your bottle. There are also water bottles made from materials that let them collapse when not in use, making for convenient storage.
Accessing the water
Think about how you’ll access the water from the bottle. If you want to get at the water easily, such as during a workout or run, a nozzle makes for quick, spillage-free access. Otherwise, you can find water bottles with screw-top spouts, caps, or a combination of straw and spout. Consider how sturdy the access point is on the bottle, as some straws or nozzles are flimsy and can easily break.
Cleaning the bottle
Water bottles will need regular cleaning to stop them going mouldy, so consider how easy a bottle is to clean, especially in the water access area, which can sometimes be fiddly to get at during cleaning. Some bottles purport to be mould or stain resistant.