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Sports nutrition for tennis players

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The key factors for tennis playerstennis players

A competitive training and a healthy and balanced nutrition are fundamental in the daily life of a tennis player. We understand that nutrition is a factor that each tennis player individually can control and through a balanced, controlled and healthy diet, can get to improve their results and their performances.

  • An optimal diet will keep you healthier

A healthy and balanced diet suppose for the tennis player better performances, phases of rest and recovery of complete energy. The correct choice of feeding will make you recover energy and strength for training or competitions, they are essential for performance.

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A balanced diet will be composed of:

  • Carbohydrates for tennis players

carbohydrates-nutrition-tennisCarbohydrates are a fundamental tool for tennis players since they provide the reserve of energy necessary for the effective practice of this sport. When the tennis player consumes carbohydrates, he absorbs part of them, stores the rest and then uses them as an energy source during the exercise.

Among the foods that contain the highest presence of carbohydrates are cereals, legumes, rice, fruit, sports drinks, cereal bars …

  • Proteins for tennis players

Proteins-for-tennis players Proteins are a fundamental part of the structure of the body for the development of a normal life. Proteins accumulate in the muscles and in the most important organs. The proteins of animal origin, tend to contain the most important essential ingredients.

A balanced vegetarian diet that includes the consumption of milk, cheese and eggs will provide us with the necessary amount of protein for the practice of this sport.

For a strict vegetarian diet, you need to combine foods with non-vegetable proteins to ensure that you are taking all the essential proteins.

Among the foods with the highest presence of proteins are legumes, nuts, meat, fish …

  • LipidsLipidos-para-tennis-sports

Fats are a form of concentrated energy. Fats are important for the diet, as they provide much-needed vitamins, such as A, D, E and K. Women naturally store higher levels of fat during pregnancy and the period of breastfeeding. An excessive intake of fats can mean an increase in the fat reserves of the body, or in other words, gain weight. Tennis players need to optimize fat intake levels to ensure a slender physique for the performance.

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A balanced diet should contain a higher intake of olive oil and low levels of animal fat. To reduce the risk factors that can cause heart disease, it is important to ensure the intake of fatty acids because the body is not able to generate them on their own. Omega 3 and Omega 6. These fatty acids are important for the growth of hair, skin, and nails. They also intervene in the development of intellectual capacity and memory. These fats serve as protection against heart disease. They are also important for immunity and for inflammatory reactions.

What is the ideal level of fat for tennis players?tennis players

There are several factors that affect body fat levels: genetics and body type, age, training levels, injuries, stress, diet, sleep patterns and daily activity levels.

If a player is too slender he will experience a greater level of fatigue, a greater sensitivity to the cold, he may be more at risk of injury … Women tennis players who have a low-fat body may experience disorders in their menstrual periods. A player with too much body fat can compromise his tennis efficiency on the pitch, as well as having lower resistance and lower energy levels.

Recommendations to reduce body fat.

  • Do not skip breakfast, as it helps us “turn on” our metabolism.
  • We must eat food in less quantity and increase the frequency in which we do it.
  • Reduce fat intake in the diet by eliminating processed foods, cakes, cookies.
  • Select less fatty meats such as chicken, turkey.
  • Increase the daily intake of fruit and vegetables.
  • Choose low-fat snacks, sodas and similar.

Displacement to the tournaments for tennis playerstennis players

The tennis players spend most of the year traveling around the world to compete in the different tournaments that take place thousands of kilometers away from each other. Travel becomes a fundamental part of your daily life. The displacements to the different competitions sometimes entail the use of different means of transport, delays and unforeseen events, adaptation to different time zones … In addition, there are challenges regarding the nutrition of athletes, facing unknown food, poor hygienic conditions and sanitary food, the monotony of the menu of hotel restaurants, the lack of supplies of a particular food … All these factors can alter and interfere with the daily routine of the tennis players, which in the long run can affect your performance.

How to prepare the displacement to the tournaments for tennis players

  • Make sure you consult your nutritionist before traveling to any competition.
  • When you prepare the trip, check the food available at your destination.
  • Find out if the water of the country you are traveling to is safe or not.
  • Take with you a reserve of foods such as dehydrated fruit, energy bars, and breakfast cereals.
  • Avoid the ingestion of drinks with caffeine and alcohol to avoid possible dehydration.
  • Make sure you keep your body hydrated enough during the flight.
  • A strategy for long-haul flights is to take a meal high in carbohydrates and low in protein, in this way you will facilitate sleep during the journey.

How to prepare the diet for competition a tennis playerstennis players

Preparing and planning the diet for tournaments is essential. To be able to act at the maximum performance you must ensure that you are with the batteries charged. Carbohydrates supply most of our energy. It is advisable to store certain carbohydrate reserves in the pre-tournament phase.

  • Mineral salts and liquids directly affect your performance so you should plan a good strategy to keep you optimally hydrated at all times.
  • It is essential that you maximize your carbohydrate reserves in the pre-tournament phase.
  • To store energy and carbohydrates in the liver and muscles, you must lower the workload the day before a confrontation.
  • Eat slightly more carbohydrates than in a day of training
  • Eat a carbohydrate-rich meal 2-3 hours before a game.
  • Never skip breakfast, as it is essential when turning on the metabolism for competitions.

Choose foods rich in carbohydrates, low in fat and fiber, moderate in protein and that are easy to digest, such as pasta with tomato sauce, baked potatoes with beans, low-fat white meat sandwich, breakfast with cereals and toast, skimmed yogurts, fruit …

Fill your carbohydrate reserves with foods rich in them like cereal bars, isotonic gels, dehydrated fruit in the hour before the game for tennis players.

  • A large bowl of cereals with milk, a banana and two tablespoons of grapes.
  • 3 toasts with jam and a large glass of juice to accompany.
  • Roasted potato with half a can of beans and a glass of orange juice.
  • A large pasta dish with natural tomato sauce and a piece of fruit.
  • It never hurts to use energy gels for athletes or cereal bars before starting and during the game.

Hydration techniques for tennis playerstennis players

Before the match.

  • Make sure you start each day with the optimal levels of hydration.
  • Use carbonated drinks for athletes that contain electrolytes.
  • You must replace at least 80% of the water lost due to sweating during the game. It is recommended that during the changes of the site between 4 and 8 drinks of energy drinks are drunk to recover part of this lost water.
  • It is important not to drink more fluids than recommended, as it can become a problem to increase body weight during the game.

After the match.

The main objective that should be established after a game is to begin the process of recovery and rehydration. For this we must take both liquids and carbohydrates, recovering our electrolytes and taking a small amount of protein.

  • The post game is the ideal time to recover the levels of body hydration. It is essential to begin the rehydration process at this time, whether it competes on the next day or not.
  • For a quick rehydration, you should drink 1.5 liters of water for every kilogram of lost body weight.

Drinks for athletes.

In recent years, sports drinks are being used for both professionals and amateurs. These drinks contain a mixture of carbohydrates and electrolytes. The carbohydrates present in these beverages are a mixture of polymers of glucose, sucrose, and fructose.

  • The higher the level of carbohydrates in the drink, the slower the time to absorb the water present in it.
  • Electrolytes usually contain salt, potassium, and magnesium, chemical elements that help us absorb water.
  • When you have to choose a drink, select one that contains between 5 and 7% of the concentration of carbohydrates (isotonic drinks).
  • 0’5 -1 liter can give you between 30 and 60 grams of carbohydrates per hour.
  • Make sure the drinks are cold, to help a quick absorption of liquids.
  • Sports drinks contain calories, it is important to take them into account when planning the diet.
  • The elite tennis players must take special care when choosing these drinks, should consult with your dietitian since they must be free of any chemical or product that may be harmful.

Finally, it is recommended to visit the dentist regularly if these types of drinks are used, to maintain optimal oral health.

Recovery for tennis playerstennis players

The recovery process is essential to ensure that you perform to the maximum in the preparation of the training sessions and tournaments. An adequate recovery allows us to develop better strategies, increase the workload and increase performance in the medium term. A good recovery needs to quickly replenish carbohydrate levels, replenish fluids and replace the loss of mineral salts.

The carbohydrate storage ratios are higher during the first two hours after finishing the physical exercise. You should plan to eat carbohydrate-rich foods at that time, as this is the time when the most carbohydrate absorption is carried out.

The proteins that are ingested with carbohydrates at the time of recovery, will facilitate the growth and development of muscle mass.

Some examples could be:

  • Two pieces of fruit, rye bread, and a fruit yogurt.
  • A piece of fruit and a chicken fajita.
  • Toast with beans in tomato sauce.
  • Bowl of cereals with skimmed milk and a banana.

Female tennis playerstennis players

The lack of iron in the blood happens when the body can not cope with the required levels of hemoglobin. Hemoglobin is responsible for creating red blood cells, which carry oxygen from the lungs to the bloodstream. The lack of iron is caused both by the loss of large amounts of blood (menstrual period) and by poor nutritional preparation.

In several studies carried out, female athletes show that they consume lesser amounts of iron than the daily doses recommended by experts. It usually occurs in athletes who follow low-calorie diets.

The main symptoms of the lack of iron are fatigue, fatigue all the time, a poor appetite … The lack of iron in the bloodstream limits the oxygen received, which means that our physical performance is less than expected.

  • Among the foods rich in iron is red meat, fish, eggs, fruit …
  • Iron is better absorbed depending on the sources from which it is obtained: the iron present in red meat is easier to absorb by our body than that present in fruits and vegetables.
  • The vitamin C found in juices, in fruits and vegetables, helps us absorb iron.
  • The team of the teas negatively affects the absorption of iron. It is not recommended to drink tea during the meal.
  • The amount of iron absorbed will depend on the levels present in the body it is very necessary for every female tannins players.

The author is an expert on occupational training and a prolific writer who writes extensively on Business, technology, and education. He can be contacted for professional advice in matters related with occupation and training on his blog Communal Business and Your Business Magazine.

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