If golf is your thing, it’s time to start focusing not only on training and performance but how to recover after training and games. Recovery is a factor that can sometime get overlooked but can have a massive effect on performance both short term and long term. There are four main components of recovery: hydration, refuelling, physical and psychological recovery.
Hydration can have a great impact on performance. With just 1% dehydration, performance can quickly be negatively affected. Dehydration reduces your body’s ability to flush out toxins and waste products produced by your system during exercise. Replacing fluid loss during your round of golf and after, is massively important for your recovery and performance. Rehydrating steadily over the course of your round will help maintain your hydration levels as opposed to waiting until dehydrated and then guzzling several bottles down at once.
The best drinks for rehydrating during your round are isotonic sports drinks such as powerade, lucozade & gatorade as they contain similar levels of salt and sugar that your body loses during exercise. Post-round rehydration is best done using hypertonic drinks due to their increased carbohydrate content (10%) which helps restore your body’s energy levels. It is also important to remember that for every kilogram of body weight lost during exercise, this equates to one litre of water you need to replace.
Your diet as a golfer is important for refuelling before, during and after your rounds. Make sure that you consume a balanced diet in order for your body to recovery as quick and efficiently as possible. Lean protein and vegetables are great as a post-round meal because the protein will aid muscle recovery and the carbohydrates will restore your energy levels. It is important to try and plan your meals/snacks so you make sure your meals fit in with your training. One of the good things about golf is that it allows you to be able to consume healthy snacks during your round to stay fuelled.
Using a Sports Therapist, like ourselves for massage is very important to aid recovery between rounds, as well as assisting with the prevention of injury. If you cannot gain access to a Therapist then you can use a foam roller or massage ball as a form of self-massage. Alternating hot and cold therapy in the form of cold and hot baths also speeds up recovery. Finally, stretching between rounds is very important to not only improve flexibility and range of movement, but to prevent any muscles strains in the future.
This can be done by spending an hour or two after your round going through aspects of your game that you played well and the areas that you need to work on before your next round. This is important because once you do this you can mentally move onto your next round and not over think any negatives that may have happened during your previous round. Sleep is also a key psychological recovery strategy because it allows your mind to rest so when you wake up you are re-energised and ready to practice and plan your strategy for your next round.