“Protein is the biggest key to muscle building!” Have you heard this before? It is a common misconception among many college athletes. Protein shakes and supplements are commonly taken at any time of day to “build muscles.” However, know that carbohydrates, fats, and protein are the keys to strength and endurance. There are times when more of one is better than another and it’s important to realize these “windows.” Only a certain amount of protein is actually absorbed by our bodies. The rest is excreted; it is useless. So don’t think you are making your athlete better by giving him/her more protein.
So what do I eat before working out?
Athletes must eat carbohydrates and fats with a small amount of protein for adequate energy. Yes, small amount of protein. Carbs give energy, not protein! The closer it gets to workout time (1 hour or less) the less you want to feed your athlete.
Right before a workout -easily digestible carbs for immediate sugar and energy
piece of fresh fruit.
2-3 hours before training session feed him/her a portion of healthy fat, carbs, and protein.
Options: half a peanut butter and jelly sandwich
yogurt with granola
If the session is over 3 hours away try:
oatmeal with fruit and milk
turkey and cheese sandwich with a side salad
Preworkout fueling is not all about protein. It’s about carbs and good fats to fuel the body. Remember-timing is critical! You want the best performance, injury prevention, and muscle building!
ask if you are uncertain as to how something was prepared, and try to make the best choices possible.
Tags:pre workout·protein·workout meal
May 6th, 2012 by Andrea McDonough · Recruiting
I liked this article. Although there remain serious flaws in the recruiting process, Brad Winton of Athlete Web Solutions, reminds parents and athletes to be real about an athlete’s talent level. Sometimes a hard truth, but it pays off it the end.
There’s credible on going research exploring benefits of omega-3 fats and brain health after concussion type injuries – a good thing for athletes. As usual the supplement industry is trying to capitalize on vulnerable athletes and their parents. Supplements to cure concussions – it sounds too good to be true and it is! Athletic trainers and docs are the ones properly trained to make return-to-play decisions.
Get more info from this article
Tags:concussion·ImPact·nutrition supplements·sports concussions
April 18th, 2012 by Andrea McDonough · Sports Parenting
Parents. I had no idea. I thought that Youth Sports were run by a town official or by the Athletic Director at the public school. How did I miss this fact?
My curious self believes the answer lies in the fact that we lived overseas for many years and didn’t return to the States until our kids were past the Youth Sports Team options. I’ll go with that.
Still channeling my curious self, I wondered how many towns have an oversight committee for the Youth Sports boards. It sounds like a good idea given the level of stress parents and athletes feel about where youth sports are, and are going. Early specialization, year round training and competition, limited strength and conditioning, unsupervised strength and conditioning , the high cost to fully participate (camps, one-on-one skill training, equipment, travel), favoritism by parent coaches all come up as concerns from parents of youth athletes. Yes, this list of concerns is not complete.
If you’re thinking about creating an oversight board here’s a great resource – National Alliance for Youth Sports
Maybe you have some ideas to share from your communities. We’d love to hear them.
Tags:Parent coaches·youth sports·Youth Sports Organizations
March 31st, 2012 by Becca Gaines · Sports Psychology
A professor from Purdue University and director of the Action-Modulated Perception Lab, Jessica Witt is trying to understand how athletes perceive the basketball hoop or golf hole and whether that helps in their shooting percentages!
Check out the psychology behind how we perceive something and how that influences the outcome in this article.
The Psychology of Sport Performance
Tags:Basketball hoop·golf hole·Jessica Witt·New York Times·perception·psychology·Sport Performance·sport psychology
For the families with athletes, the try-out week can be daunting. So many emotions, schedules, equipment purchases and more. What’s the best way to support your athlete?
“Please don’t ask me how I did. That stresses me out. Please make my transition from the field to home stress-free.”
“I don’t need to be reminded to get enough rest and to eat. I do need to be reminded that you are proud of me for trying so hard and following through on a commitment.”
“If I don’t make the team, don’t blame the coach and politics. I don’t need you to make an excuse for me. It makes me feel like you think I can’t handle disappointment. “
“If I do make the team, don’t ignore it. Ask me what it was like to go through try-outs. Ask me what I felt when I learned I made it. Let me know you are proud of me and list the qualities you see in me that you admire.”
…a little wisdom from high school athletes.
Tags:athlete competition·parents and coaches·talking with teens·try-outs
When I talk to Physical Therapists, I always ask, “What concerns do you have about teenage athletes and weight training?”
Close to 100% of the time I get a sigh. Here are some responses:
“Nobody monitors those kids. There are more injuries created in the weight room because of poor weight lifting form than from actual play on the field.”
“Guys load up the weight and then over-do. They want big chests and big arms. There is a guy thing to challenge each other to see who can lift the most without ANY consideration for using proper form and techniques. There’s little supervision and lots of opportunity for injuries.”
“Girls worry about getting big. They believe lifting will make their legs and arms too big. They want flat abs and “cut” arms. In reality, girls do not have sufficient blood levels of testosterone to bulk up the way guys can. Low weights with lots of repetition can help them become strong which in turn can help prevent injuries. “
So, parents, who IS monitoring your athlete’s weight room?
Tags:athletic trainers·Certified Athletic Trainers·high school athletic trainers·high school weight room
March 21st, 2012 by Andrea McDonough · Sports Parenting
Read an article in the Darien Patch yesterday and it provoked some interest because we talk about it frequently at VarsityParenting.
One of the hardest questions I hear parents ask themselves is, “How involved should I be with my child’s athletics?” They want to know what is OK and what isn’t OK. I wish the answer were simple, but when it comes to emotions, there can be a wide range of healthy responses.
As parents, it’s important to step back and ask yourself some questions.
Do I really think my comment will help my child in this particular moment?
Am I more stressed about their success than they are?
How does my stress affect my child?
Where are my worries coming from?
What helps me when I’m struggling with something?
The point of asking yourself these questions (certainly there are other questions to ask as well) is to highlight the motivation around your behaviors. Once you have a better understanding of “why” you feel compelled to do something you can then decide if it’s something you want to continue doing. Asking yourself these questions will help you, the parent, become aware of what will be helpful.
Becoming aware of your personal feelings and what they mean can be instrumental in displaying positive behavior for your athlete and supporting them as they work to reach their goals.
Tags:sports parenting·varsity sports parenting
February 29th, 2012 by Becca Gaines · Sports Medicine
Dr. Jordan Metzel is a sports physician for the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York City and works daily with young people. He responded to the Today Show’s question about the increase in the number of ACL (anterior cruciate ligament) tears. Dr. Metzel talked about the increase in the number of females participating in sports and the physical changes that occur in their bodies during puberty and how that effects the hips and the knees.
I remember lifting in high school and the trainers would be paying close attention to our knee positioning when we were at the low point of the squat, making sure our knees were straight and not pointing inwards. This teaches the joints proper technique and strengthens them so that the ACL is less likely to tear.
My dad is also a sports medicine orthopedic surgeon and I can still hear him saying to pay attention to my knees. “Becca, keep your knees straight, don’t let them turn inward!” Luckily, I did not have to experience an ACL tear but many of my clients have.
I want to share some links to help athletes and parents see what is and what is not proper form and hear from our local expert, Dr. Jordan Metzel.
Watch the link for video demonstrations on proper form. It is really important to have an experienced trainer WATCH you do the exercises because what we THINK we’re doing with our bodies and what we ARE doing with our bodies can be two different things. And, it usually takes many, many times repeating an exercise properly before your body “remembers.” Don’t feel bad if you can’t get it the first time – make sure to get feedback on proper form until you truly get it.
Another great article about knees and the reason for the rise in ACL tears is in the following interview with Dr. Metzel. Take a look!
Interview with Dr. Metzel about ACL and teenagers
Tags:ACL·Jordan Metzel·lifting weights·prevention·sport psychology·Sports Medicine·teenage athletes·teens