Tennis Nutrition: Diet Before, During and After a Match
Tennis requires high levels of physical fitness, concentration and strategizing. The energy required for a game can be obtained only through proper diet. A well structured tennis nutrition program helps sustain optimal health and endurance of the player. Here are the basic diet requirements of players before, after and during a match.
Tennis Nutrition: The Pre-Game Meal
The pre-game meal is recommended 3-4 hours before the game. It should be high in carbohydrates, moderate in protein and low in fat. This can preferably be in the form of grilled chicken, energy drink, fruit, and low-sodium biscuit or cracker.
A small snack 2-3 hours before a match keeps hunger at bay during the match. It can be a banana, energy drink or energy bar and, of course, water for hydration.
Tennis Nutrition: Meal during a Game
The high energy required during a game leads to the depletion of glycogen deposits in the body. Hence, diet during a match should replenish the lost glycogen. Snacks rich in complex carbohydrates are recommended during intensive or extended tennis matches. This can be energy drinks (other than water), energy bars and fruit such as bananas.
Water intake should also not be neglected during a match. Even when the player is not thirsty, he should drink water every 15 minutes to replenish water and electrolytes lost in sweat.
Tennis Nutrition: Meal after a Game
As players lose large quantities of water, electrolytes and glycogen during a match, it is important to replenish them within two hours of the game. This can be supplied in the form of foods and drinks rich in carbohydrates and proteins. Players can start the recovery process soon after the match with a sports drink.
A correctly structured nutrition plan must have a diet that caters to the varying player requirements and playing conditions. Check our secret ninja tennis nutrition plan in the bonus section of Fitness For Tennis.