It’s here! The athletes competing in the NCAA Tournament the past week or so have earned their way in as one of the top 64 teams in the country by competing at a high level in 2-3 games per week over the last four to five months. Those teams who earn a spot in the coveted Sweet 16 and Elite 8 rounds of the tournament are faced with playing in their most meaningful games in a short period of time with very little rest and recovery in between; not to mention the travel, media obligations, additional practices, etc. In order to maintain these high levels of performance in less than familiar conditions, certain measures must take place to give each athlete the best opportunity at staying healthy and on the court when it matters most.
Golf athletes are faced with the same hurdles during tournament play on consecutive days. The body will adapt to the demands placed on it over time, but initially (especially in the beginning of the season) you will need to be even more aware of your pre and post round routine. Managing your body becomes even more difficult when the unpredictable happens. Rain delays, for example, take you out of your rhythm and pose a threat to your levels of focus, not to mention the potential to have to compete for upwards of 27 or more holes in a day to make up for the time that was lost. Whether you’re on the PGA Tour playing four or five days in a row, a junior golf athlete competing two or three days in a row, or on your buddies’ trip playing 27 or 36 holes a day on consecutive days, if you want to play your best you must allow your body the ability to recover.
Proper nutrition/hydration, self-myofascial release, and good quality sleep are some of the most important factors to consider when you are required to compete at a high level with a very quick turnaround. Nutritionally you should focus on consuming a meal high in carbohydrates and protein following your round. Replenishing your fluids is just as important. Amino Vital Pro-R is a product we believe in when it comes to post round (or workout) recovery as it will provide the amino acids, vitamins, minerals, and electrolytes necessary to help your muscles recover. Self-myofascial release, or soft tissue work, will draw blood flow to the area being worked on and flush out some of the byproduct from your activity that day. Lastly, SLEEP! If you do not give your body enough time to rest you will become fatigued and perform at a low level as a result. This brings increased risk of injury into play, and you’re not going to win golf tournaments or basketball tournaments when that happens.