How applying pro athlete techniques can help you reach the next level in achieving optimal fitness
Were you one of the millons of Aussies glued to their screens in awe of the sheer strength and stamina of players during the 2013 Australian Open Tennis Championship? Did it inspire you to ramp up your exercise routine?
The experts behind tennis idols, Sam Stosur and Zheng Jie, ranked World No. 9 and World No. 42 respectively, say you don’t have to be a professional to achieve world class health and fitness.
Kathleen Stroia, Physical Therapist and Athletic Trainer to USANA Health Science ambassadors Stosur and Jie says, “A little inside knowledge can go a long way. Applying the same techniques as a pro athlete can help you to reach the next level in achieving optimal health and fitness. Simple changes to diet and lifestyle can turn a weekend warrior into a champion.”
In an exclusive first, Kathleen shares the top health and fitness secrets of a world-class tennis pro:
1. Periodise your training. Professional athletes don’t play one sport at full intensity for 12 months straight and neither should you.
- Instead of doing the same routine month after month, modify your training program at regular intervals to keep your body working harder, while still giving it adequate rest.
- For example, if you run too easily, and don’t push yourself, you won’t progress. And chances are you’ll get bored.
- Conversely, too much speed or high-intensity training may lead to injury or burnout, and more often than not, disappointing results.
2. Build recovery into your plan. A common mistake of weekend warriors is to push themselves to GO, GO, GO, and often people are reluctant to rest in fear of losing progress.
- The body repairs and strengthens itself in the time between workouts. Recovery will help your muscles and connective tissues to repair quicker, allowing you to train harder and more effectively the next time.
- Recovery is just as important as the hard work you’re doing, particularly in preventing injury. Continuous training can actually weaken even the strongest athletes.
Sport involves stress of 3 main systems:
When physical, emotional and cognitive stress and load and rest and recovery are imbalanced, the result will be fatigue, decreased performance, psychological or emotional stressors, inability to train normally and increased risk of illness & injury.
As a guide these can be some of the signs that this is occurring:
1. Prolonged fatigue, (1-2 weeks or more) not relieved by rest or recovery
2. Decreased Performance
3. Decreased Motivation
4. Sleep pattern changes, usually include waking un-refreshed
5. Mood changes
6. Muscle soreness, not relieved by rest or recovery
7. Heightened susceptibility to illness
8. AND…All other potential organic causes are screened out
3. Is your work out too easy?
Training should be hard - to get physiological adaptations we need to push the body to its limits so that adaptation occurs, therefore if your training routine is easy think about increasing force or frequency. Often when exercising, there is a tendency to perform too much of the one type of exercise, it is important for continued gains to incorporate both strength training, aerobic training and flexibility.
Vary what you are doing in your week to prevent lack of interest. Often signs of lack of progression for training include lack of motivation, feeling stagnant and no improvement in performance.
USANA Health Sciences has provided high-quality nutritional supplements to over 160 Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) players, including USANA Ambassadors, Kim Clijsters, Aleksandra Wozniak, Sloane Stephens and Liezel Huber as well as Sam Stosur and Zheng Jie.
For more information on USANA Health Sciences visit www.usana.com or call 1800 670 126.