Tips to Help Student Athletes Reach Peak Performance
The Fall sport season is right around the corner! With the start of a new school year and a new sports team, the beginning of the season can be tough. Regardless of what sport is being played, there are many factors that can help student athletes have a great tryout and season, including the four tips outlined below.
Shoes: Proper equipment and gear at the start of the season can be a great way to prevent injuries and help athletes get an extra performance boost! Shoes are known for enduring lots of wear and tear. Worn out shoes can potentially cause foot pain and lead to overuse injuries that inhibit athletic ability. Investing in new shoes can provide athletes with more comfort, allowing them to reach peak performance.3 However, it is important to break in new shoes before playing in them. Doing so can help to prevent blisters and other discomfort that could occur.
Sleep: Getting a good night sleep helps athletes feel rested and ready for early morning training! Sleeping is essential for helping the body recover. In fact, the National Sleep Foundation notes that when sleep is cut short, the body doesn’t have enough time to complete all of the phases needed for things like muscle repair or memory consolidation.4 This is why it is important for athletes to gain enough shuteye before tryouts, practice and games!
Nutrition: As the season begins, the importance of nutrition should be remembered. Eating consistent healthy meals helps fuel the body and provides energy that is needed to perform. Athletes should focus on consuming enough carbohydrates from the proper sources. Good food sources include pasta, bread, cereal, fruit and vegetables. Carbohydrates are a significant contributor to an athlete’s energy, so it is important to eat the right amount. Protein can also influence performance and help the body maintain its strength. A few good sources of protein include meats, fish, beans, eggs and milk.1 By having a balanced diet, athletes will have the energy needed to succeed.
Hydration: Hydration is another aspect of nutrition that can affect performance. It is important to stay ahead of dehydration by drinking water consistently throughout the day. Athletes should always have a water bottle handy, including at practices so that enough fluids are consumed during physical activity. Since the recommendations for staying hydrated vary from person to person, consider learning more about sweat rate by reading Athletico’s “Hydration for Performance and Health.”
Reaching Peak Performance
Student athletes have a lot to focus on during the school year. These tips can help athletes stay healthy and reach their peak performance for tryouts and games. Should any aches or pains during training occur, make sure to schedule a complimentary injury screen at your nearest Athletico so you can get back in the game as soon as possible.
- Jaret, Peter. “5 Nutrition Tips for Athletes.” WebMD, WebMD, www.webmd.com/fitness-exercise/features/nutrition-tips-athletes#1.
- Griffin, R. Morgan. “Can Sleep Improve Your Athletic Performance?” WebMD, WebMD, www.webmd.com/fitness-exercise/features/sleep-athletic-performance
- “How Do I Know When It Is Time To Replace My Athletic Shoes?” How Do I Know When It Is Time To Replace My Athletic Shoes, www.aapsm.org/replace_shoes.html
- “What Happens When You Sleep?” National Sleep Foundation. N.p., n.d. Web. 01 Aug. 2017.