Athletic performance is often defined by terms such as size, strength, speed and agility but all too often nutrition is side-lined. Nutrition – plays a big role in a player’s physical performance both on and off the field. In fact, the whole family can benefit from eating healthily with your little rugby player. We look into the foods you can incorporate into family meals to ensure your son’s dietary needs are fulfilled.
WHAT RUGBY PLAYERS NEED:
Calciumis important for the health and strength of bones and muscles as well as for healthy functioning of the heart and nerves. Incorporating the following foods can help increase their intake:
- Pumpkin seeds
- Green vegetables
- Low fat dairy
Ironis essential for boosting metabolism, allowing for proper functioning of all muscles and increasing energy production. Add these foods to your meals to make sure your child is getting the iron he needs:
Vitamin Bis also good for metabolism, as well as for blood health, by its involvement in red blood cell production, and mental health by ensuring healthy brain functioning and a general sense of wellbeing:
Zincis key for improving immunity and helping with the body’s natural healing ability. It is also important for growth, especially in younger children. Foods that contain zinc include:
Carbohydrates, a necessary nutrient for any sports player, fuel the body to function effectively, thus providing the energy players need for optimum performance on the field. Healthy carbohydrates to include in family meals include:
- Wholegrain breads and pastas
- Rolled oats
- Sweet potatoes
- Plain/low-fat yoghurts
Protein is yet another vital nutrient for rugby players, as it works to develop muscle growth and support muscle maintenance, playing an important role in recovery after practices – this is important no matter what level your child is playing at. Protein foods include:
- Lean meats
- Low-fat dairy
Fatsare also important (believe it or not), and healthy ones need to be included in your family meals for providing energy and supporting brain development and health. Healthy fats can be found in:
For a healthy breakfast or weekend brunch, why not try this delicious Salmon Frittata that offers a quick and healthy intake of calcium, zinc, iron, protein and fats that is sure to leave smiles on the faces of the whole family.
HOW WE CAN HELP YOU!
Our Advanced Players’ and Coaches’ Courses, and our 5 Day Players’ and Coaches’ Courses offer detailed sessions on nutrition, rehydration and recovery. Help him understand that his health is important to his success in the game by registering him for our upcoming courses on our website. Our courses deal with the technical, theoretical and practical components of the game in detail. Find out course outline in more detail or book his spot at our December courses, click here.