Squash players, tend to religiously follow their set down routines like circuit training, Drives, competitive play in a bid to better their game of squash.

In the pursuit of these schedules, most players take for granted some basic elements that are to help them perform better and have significant effect in their game. The things mostly taken for granted are:

1.SLEEP
The National Sleep Foundation states that, “sleep plays a critical role in staying healthy, feeling happy, maintaining good grades, and doing well in sports.”

Quality sleep affects how we look, feel and perform on a daily basis, and can also have a major impact on our squash.

It has been proven severally that lack of sleep can result in slower reactions, less fine motor control which will eventually have a knock-on effect on shot accuracy, increased chance of injury, and a drop of around 30% in your time to physical exhaustion (i.e. a reduction in player’s endurance

2.WATER
Drinking fluid during exercise is necessary to replace fluids lost in sweat. This action will reduce the risk of heat stress, maintain normal muscle function, and prevent performance decrease due to dehydration.

A game like squash that is played in a confined area and is usually characterized with sweating. There is need for extra amount of fluid intake before, during and after playing.

Also, fluid is necessary to avoid slipping into a dehydrated state. Studies  suggests that lose of sweat that equals 2% of body weight causes a decrease in physical and mental performance.

The American College of Sports Medicine provides the following guidelines for the maintenance of optimal hydration:

Before Exercise: 16-20 ounces within the two-hour period prior to exercise.

During Exercise: 4-8 ounces every 15-20 minutes during exercise.

Post Exercise: Replace 24 ounces for every one pound of body weight lost during exercise.

As a squash player, your daily intake of water before training, and topping it up with extra amounts on training/match days can not be compromised.

Coach Jonah Attah
Prodigy Squash Academy