Eating a healthy & balanced diet is essential to athlete preparation, performance and recovery. Knowing which foods are best to refuel and repair your body will give you the edge you need to make the most of every training session and improve results. We want to help our athletes and parents understand how to look after their body through a simplified approach to sports nutrition.
We believe in a
food first approach.
This means we always prioritise players having the right types of food before looking for alternative solutions. This involves having a good balance of carbohydrates, protein, fats, essential vitamins and minerals and appropriate levels of hydration.
4 Pillars of Nutrition
Our philosophy also focuses on the 4 pillars of nutrition.
Each pillar represents a component of nutrition and helps your body recover.
Recovery can take up to 48 hours from the stresses of training and competition!
The first pillar is Refuel, this is your carbohydrate source and where you get all of your energy from, with no energy you can’t train or compete. Just like when driving a car you can’t get anywhere with no fuel in the tank. Even if you have low levels of fuel you still have to drive half the speed just so you can get to your destination. The same applies when fueling your body, you want your energy supplies to be full so you can work to the best of your ability and not have to slow down half way through your practices. Eat slow release carbs at least 1-2 hours before training to top up your energy levels and ensure you have enough energy to perform optimally. After training refuel within 30-60 minutes by replenishing depleted energy stores with simple fast release carbs to kick start recovery.
Our second pillar is Repair, this is your protein source and is what your muscles use for growth and to repair themselves after training. Protein is one of the key building blocks to recovery and top flight performance, without it your body will take longer to recover and will not grow as effectively. Eating protein rich foods such as eggs, meat, nuts, cheese and milk can not only build muscle but prevents muscle loss, help maintain a healthy weight whilst also helping you feel fuller for longer. Regular protein intake helps strengthen the immune system, heal wounds and regulate the growth of hair and nails.
The protect pillar consists of your vitamins and minerals which are essential for youth athletes. Vitamins have to be found in your food as they cannot be produced in the body itself. Minerals are essential for youth athletes - due to their quick periods of bone growth calcium is needed to support healthy bone development. Iron is required to transport oxygen in the blood to all the working muscles. A lack of iron places a high risk of anemia especially in female athletes.
Young people can't regulate their body temperatures as efficiently as adults and tend not sweat as much, so getting this right is extremely important. Thirst is a poor indicator of hydration, so the easy way to stay hydrated is to carry a water bottle and sip it throughout the day. Remember to pay particular attention to periods immediately before, during and after sport. If you are dehydrated you have lower blood volume which results in your heart having to work harder to deliver the same amount of oxygen to the working muscles. This in turn increases fatigue and can lead to altered brain function, decrease movement quality and increase injury risk.
It is not always possible to fulfil the energy requirements players need after playing hours of tennis on the court and training in the gym through food alone. It is important to include high quality supplements in their diet to address this energy imbalance created from exercising so much.
We have partnered with Youth Sport Nutrition (YSN). YSN is a world leader in youth nutrition and understand what youth athletes need to help them recover and perform at their best.
We know there are loads of different supplements out there, and so it can be hard to know which ones to go for. Aside from their expertise in youth nutrition specifically, one of the reasons we're partnering with YSN is because all of their products are tested through Informed Sport. This means they have been screened for products on the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) banned substance list, and we can completely trust that this product is safe for our players.
If you would like to try YSN supplements head to their website
and use this code at checkout