EXPERT SESSIONS AND ADVICE FOR GRASSROOTS SOCCER COACHES

Three truths to improve your fitness training

Here are three truths that are worth remembering when trying to maintain fitness or recover from injury.Don’t run through a stitch

The stabbing pain in the tummy, otherwise known as a stitch means that you have taken on too many carbohydrates before you started training. This normally means too much pasta, maybe an hour or so earlier, or after a big meal. What has happened is that there is a sudden rush of sugar, increasing the amount of insulin your liver has to cope with. The liver squeezes and this is where you feel the real pain – the stitch.

Action: you should not run through a stitch. The pain will mean that you are not able to maintain a proper body shape and might cause you to injure yourself in another way. It is simply a case of stopping and waiting for the pain to subside.

Loss of performance through loss of water – think about the water intake timings

It only takes a loss of 3% of water from the body to impair the performance of most normal football players. Rehydration, the replacement of lost water, needs to occur on regular intervals, normally every 15 to 20 minutes. Ideally you need to replace the same amount of water with each drink.

However this sort of rehydration does not represent the game situations where water intake is not as controlled. If possible it is better to train as you play and this goes for rehydration. The body adapts through training to the conditions set, therefore benefiting the football player when they play in the game.

Two good nights sleep will repair your muscles more effectively

Most muscle repair occurs while you are asleep. This happens through something called deep orthodox sleep. Deep orthodox sleep last for 20 minutes on average and happens at most 4 or 5 times a night, but on average 3 times. You need 5 cycles to give the maximum muscle repair. A good night’s sleep is when you reach that 5 cycles, but for most that means two good night’s of sleep for fully repaired muscles.

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