Preparing For Spring
With spring sports just starting and the unseasonably warm weather we have been having lately (which nobody is complaining right?) I figured it’s time to remind everyone about acclimating to the weather and preseason/tryouts. It is very important whenever starting a new season, no matter when, to remember to start slow and work your way up to full speed and full play.
For most athletes, especially in Minnesota, they have spent the most part of the last 4-5 months inside in a controlled temperature environment and are not use to exercising outside and especially in heat and humidity.
Tips for optimal performance:
- Heat acclimation should take place over 7-14 days with intensity increasing
- Eat a well balance breakfast and lunch: make sure you are eating good complex carbohydrates and lean protein for energy and avoiding high sugary and fat foods.
- Drink plenty of fluids: Water throughout the day will help keep the athlete hydrated as well as a drink with electrolytes after workouts to replenish those lost nutrients.
- Start sport-specific conditioning 6-8 weeks prior to the new season
- Make sure you are stretching (dynamic and static) and warming up prior to practice to help avoid injury
- If you feel sick (either recovering or the onset of a cold) remember to drink extra fluids and lower the intensity of your workouts for that day: YOU CAN STILL PRACTICE
As an Athletic Trainer we find too many times that athletes come in on the first few days of practice having not done anything all winter, did not eat breakfast or lunch, and are drinking soda during school and cannot understand why they are tired, dizzy, lightheaded, nauseous, or unable to perform the way they want or expect to. By following these few simple tips all athletes can perform to the best of their abilities.
If you have any questions on how to prepare for your next season contact your local Athletic Trainer.