​10 ways to Improve your athletes Sports Performance and keep your athlete Healthy!

10 ways to Improve your athletes Sports Performance and keep your athlete Healthy!

By Sean Wells

10 ways to Improve your athletes Sports Performance and keep your athlete Healthy!

Parents are always looking for ways to improve their high school, middle school, elementary athletes performance and in their pursuit of chasing down the newest and shiniest training method, sometimes they miss the most obvious or important. This list is a way to help you not miss the most obvious and in some circumstances the most important aspects of high school/middle school performance.

#1 : Get your athlete 7-9+ hours of sleep every night. This includes weekend nights.

  • Phones and computer screens delay sleep functions - try to get these put away an hour before bed time.
  • Lights, TV, temperature, etc. interrupt the quality of sleep. A cooler temperature and dark, no outside light, room leads to the best sleep quality.

#2 : Have them eat breakfast - and ensure it includes a protein, fat, and carbohydrates.

  • Ham, Eggs, and Cottage Cheese are all examples of proteins .
  • Oatmeal, toast, and bagels are all examples of carbs.
  • Bacon, Avocado(and or avocado oil as a cooking oil), Peanut Butter or Almond Butter are all examples of fats.

#3: Encourage them to drink more water and less non-waters, such as juice, soda, diet soda, coffee etc.

  • A glass of water in the morning before any other liquids goes a long ways to support hydration throughout the day.

#4: Don’t have your kid specialize too early - more sports is better. This has been proven time and time again.

  • One or two sports at a time though(more than that will leave your athlete always tired and fatigued). This is especially valuable in elementary aged children and early middle school.
  • Try to get your athletes to experience both team and individual sports - some will prefer one to the other and others enjoy the challenges of both.

#5: Be supportive but leave the coaching/strength and conditioning to the professionals. (Recognize you are a supportive parent, not a coach).

  • Emailing/calling coaches to ask questions is going to have a better response than asking in front of your athlete.
  • Check out the background of your athlete’s coaches beforehand.

#6: Let the kids enjoy sports

  • Let the kids pick the sports they enjoy the most(this tends to be the sport they have the most success).
  • Don’t force your hopes and dreams on them, this is their journey.
  • Let them learn from failure, it happens, so learn how to be supportive and help your athletes grow from the experience.

#7 Be realistic with your goals for your athlete(and help them be realistic) and look at those who have had success in the sport they are playing.

  • If your kid is a 5ft tall male realize that college basketball might not be in their future but a sport with weight classes might be(wrestling for example).
  • Chasing what professional athletes do as professionals or did as professionals, is a dead end street. Your athlete needs to do what the professionals did when they were of similar age and ability level.
  • There tends to patterns of what works for each sport - in height, body weight, and training background, figuring these out early helps athletes have success.
  • Athletes will break the mold - Muggsy Bogues is a great example, but realize that breaking the mold is rare and there is usually some exceptional skill sets involved in the athlete that successfully breaks the mold.

#8 Have your athlete set goals; related to the sport they are playing or what they hope to achieve.

  • Three short term goals(length of the season or 1-3 months)
  • Three medium goals(3-6 months)
  • Three long term goals(6+ months up to several years in the future)
  • Hang the goals up somewhere that is visible daily as a consistent reminder.

#9 Realize that injury prevention is tied directly with building a strong athlete.

  • Strong doesn’t mean big, strong means strong.
  • Non contact injuries more often happen in weak areas, not strong areas.
  • Your athlete can never be too strong, too fast.

#10 Hold your athlete accountable - nothing is harder for a sport coach or strength and conditioning coach than not having support from the parent.

  • Communication is key - let the coach know if the athlete is going to miss or be late - more information is always better than leaving the coach wondering where the athlete is, or questioning their dedication.

There are many more ways parents can help ensure their athletes success in organized sports but after 10 years of working with Sports Performance athletes and their parents this is our current top 10.

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