This study assesses the status of hydration and the acid-base balance in female handball players in the Polish Second League before and after simulated matches in both indoor (hall) and beach (outdoor) conditions. The values of biochemical indicators useful for describing water-electrolyte management, such as osmolality, hematocrit, aldosterone, sodium, potassium, calcium, chloride and magnesium, were determined in the players' fingertip capillary blood. Furthermore, the blood parameters of the acid-base balance were analysed, including pH, standard base excess, lactate and bicarbonate ion concentration. Additionally, the pH and specific gravity of the players' urine were determined. The level of significance was set at p < 0.05. It was found that both indoor and beach simulated matches caused post-exercise changes in the biochemical profiles of the players' blood and urine in terms of water-electrolyte and acid-base balance. Interestingly, the location of a simulated match (indoors vs. beach) had a statistically significant effect on only two of the parameters measured post-exercise: concentration of calcium ions (lower indoors) and urine pH (lower on the beach). A single simulated game, regardless of its location, directly affected the acid-base balance and, to a smaller extent, the water-electrolyte balance, depending mostly on the time spent physically active during the match.
Keywords: acid-base balance; ambient condition; nutrition; team sports; water-electrolyte status; women in sport.