Padraig Harrington Stays Hydrated By Testing His Own Urine Every Day

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↵Who says there's too much technology in golf? Three-time major champion Padraig Harrington has started taking his physical fitness a wee bit more seriously. It seems Harrington will begin using something called a refractometer to test his urine. From Shane Bacon at Dogs That Chase Cars (via the Irish Independent): ↵

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↵⇥Every day, Harrington will use a hand-held refractometer to determine if he is properly hydrated. He simply places a drop of urine on the prism and forwards the results to his health and fitness specialist Dr Liam Hennessy for analysis. ↵⇥

↵⇥On the 15 to 20 weeks per year that Dr Hennessy travels with the Irishman to tournaments, the medic himself will conduct daily blood, urine and stress testing on Harrington to ensure he is in peak physical condition, especially going into that crunch time at tournaments -- Sunday afternoon. ↵⇥

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↵I'm going to go out on a limb and suggest that the results are displayed on the device – sort of like a daily pregnancy test for hydration – and that is what the golfer sends to his doctor to analyze. Please tell me he isn't Fed Exing tiny samples of his own urine for analysis. A quick search of the term "refractometer" came up with this, via Wiki: ↵
↵⇥There are four main types of refractometers: traditional handheld refractometers, digital handheld refractometers, laboratory or Abbe refractometers, and inline process refractometers. There is also the Rayleigh Refractometer used (typically) for measuring the refractive indices of gases. ↵⇥

↵⇥In veterinary medicine, a refractometer is used to measure the total plasma protein in a blood sample and urine specific gravity. ↵⇥

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↵Let's get this straight: Jerry Rice gets disqualified from a Nationwide Tour event in his ill-fated bid to become a professional golfer because his caddy used a range-finding scope, but Paddy Harrington can have his own animal urine tester for in-tournament analysis? The rules of technology in golf really are confounding. ↵

↵And of all sports, it stands to reason that a golfer would be the first prominent athlete to utilize a daily hydration tester, what with all the walking and standing and walking and standing, while occasionally swinging a club. Plus...the walking. ↵

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↵And, per the Independent, the daily urine tests aren't the only thing Harrington is doing to try and regain the form that helped him win three majors. He's got a cabal of scientists at the ready. ↵

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↵⇥If it is within reason (and, of course, the rules) he is willing to give anything a try. ↵⇥

↵⇥World-famous mind guru Dr Bob Rotella; biomechanics expert and putting specialist Dr Paul Hurrion; leading golf chiropractor Dr Dale Richardson; a team of boffins and research specialists at the Titleist Performance Institute (TPI) in San Diego and, probably most important of all in golfing terms, renowned Scottish swing coach Bob Torrance, all support Harrington's cause with a wealth of knowledge. ↵⇥

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↵A doctor for his urine, one for his brain, one for his swing, one for his putting, one for his back, plus a team of "boffins"? An entire team of them? How can he not win every week? ↵

↵With the Memorial taking place this weekend at Muirfield Village Golf Club in Dublin, Ohio, Ireland's most prominent champion was actually slated to play in the Wales Open before withdrawing because of knee surgery. Knee surgery? That's another doctor! He does expect to be back in time for the U.S. Open, which could mean some intense rehab in the next few weeks. He better stay hydrated. ↵

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This post originally appeared on the Sporting Blog. For more, see The Sporting Blog Archives.

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