In the last post on fitness in football, you will remember that I briefly touched on the importance of fitness when playing football. If you haven’t seen that post yet, you can read about my thoughts on fitness in football here.
Read it? Great.
I mentioned that I would be focusing on sharing some key points about the relationship between health-related and physical-related performance fitness programmes in football, so that’s what you’ll discover today.
The Core Health Issues for Young Footballers?
When it comes to maintaining good health, the core areas you should focus on as a young football player are your body, mind and soul. In fact, anyone wishing to achieve a good level of health and wellness should take this suggestion to heart.
Total fitness includes: Mental health (the mind & soul) alongside Physical health (body & mind). In football (and life in general), good mental and physical health plays a very important role in helping you to cope with the rigours and demands of the modern game. Good physical wellbeing leads to good mental wellbeing, which in turn helps to increase your self-confidence, self-esteem and self-belief. Good sleep & relaxation can help the soul stimulate and rejuvenate the body & mind.
Healthy habits usually start when we’re young and playing soccer (or taking part in any sport) at an early age, helps to strengthen bones and muscles; tones the body and sharpens the mind. When there is balance in your mental and physical health, your immune system will work better to protect your body from various types of diseases.
Taking part in physical activities brings many benefits. Team sports like football (and any organised sport) will involve physical activities like running, jumping, stretching and jogging. All of these techniques will help you achieve a good level of aerobic endurance, speed endurance, agility, strength and power, which in turn will boost your mental awareness.
Exercising regularly will also improve your mental abilities by helping you to develop a competitive spirit, leadership qualities, social awareness and responsibility for your team members and others in your community. Developing a strong mental attitude will also give you the ability to deal with failure and success in a responsible way. Combining mental skills training and physical exercise can help any young footballer to attain the fitness and concentration levels needed to play at peak performance for the duration of a full match.
Take Care of Your Body Before & After Exercise
There’s no doubt that exercising is great for your body. However, it’s important that before and after any training session or football match, you take some preventative measures to avoid injuring yourself.
The best way to avoid injuries is to do some warm-up exercises before you train or take part in a match, which will ‘warm up’ your muscles and joints and prepare them for the physical activity ahead.
It’s equally important that once you’ve finished a training session or match, you do some cool-down exercises, which will help your muscles to recover from the effects of the training or game, and minimise the risk of getting a long-term injury.
I know I’ve mainly talked about exercise and physical fitness, but what you eat is important too.
What a young football player eats can influence how they – negatively or positively – perform in training or during a match. Any good footballer should have a proper balanced diet that provides the body and the brain with the necessary nutrition needed for a high level of performance.
Football is a very popular sport across the globe and football fans have high expectations; they demand a high level of entertainment and only want to see the fittest players with the best skills on the pitch.
Health and fitness in football cannot be underestimated…it’s the reason why the world’s top soccer clubs have invested in state-of-the-art training equipment to get the best performance from their players. Remember, soccer club owners want to win trophies, gain recognition for their clubs and make a profitable return on the money they invest in buying and training players. After all, an injured player sitting on the bench all season isn’t good for the player, the club or the fans …that’s why health and physical fitness is the number one priority on the agenda.
So what do you think?
I’d love to hear your views on the relationship between health and physical fitness in football, which you can share in the comments section below.