After Soccer Practice – Tips to Enjoy Relax Time
Soccer can be a physically and mentally taxing game. You run back and forth at least 100 meters from your own goal’s end to the opposing team’s goal. You do this running 45 to 75 minutes and the pressure is on when it comes to your team scoring a goal and preventing your opponents from getting a goal. Thus, you need to rest, relax and enjoy in order to recover from a hard practice game. There are many things you can do to relax and enjoy after a practice soccer match, including but not limited to the ones discussed below.
Cooling down is an important practice not only after a soccer game, practice or tryout, but for all sports as well. Although most players feel too tired and don’t feel like cooling down, this activity can actually help relax tense muscles and prevent injuries. It only needs 5-10 minutes to do and you only have to do a shorter and lighter version of a soccer warm up. You can then go home, see your girlfriend/boyfriend, enjoy a movie, etc.
Do an After-Game Stretch
Contrary to popular belief, stretching is not just an important pre-game activity, but also a post-game activity as well. Stretching after cooling down builds flexibility. Do some light stretching on your legs, feet, lower back etc. Target larger muscle groups like your calf muscles, quads and hamstrings by using a foam roller.
Enjoy a Healthy Meal
Your body needs all the nutrients it can get to recover from an intense physical activity. Thus, proper nutrition is important in improving your soccer performance. Eat lean protein, healthy grains, vegetables and unprocessed food. Some suggested foods include tuna, salmon, scrambled eggs, grilled chicken salad, yogurt, avocado and cottage cheese.
Take Your Mind Off the Game
It’s not just physical relaxation that’s important, mental relaxation is also just as important. Thinking about how to make your performance better doesn’t have to happen after the game, it can always wait. Enjoy a quality leisure time after the game. You can hit the mall, the local arcade (if there’s still one at your place) or enjoy a slot game on your mobile phone to have a healthy distraction and build up your strategy skills.
Balloonies is a fun and rewarding game to play because it not only enhances your strategy, you also get a monetary reward for a successful spin. You can find balloonies fully available on Kerching website and download it as a mobile or desktop game. This and other games that preoccupy your mind can help you relieve post-game stress, improve your hand-eye coordination and help you get back on track mentally for the next game.
Enjoy a Relaxing Nap
Another great activity for mental recovery is taking a nap. It doesn’t just cool down your body after work, it also relieves you of negative emotions, stress and anxiety. Depending on your level of exertion, you can take a 20-minute up to a 1-hour nap, but not any longer than 1-hour because it will interfere with your sleep.
Make a Journal and Record Your Progress
Okay, so you can’t keep your mind off soccer even after the game. That’s fine. Instead of sulking over a bad game or being overconfident about your recent win, find a constructive way of keeping your mind relaxed and also getting focused on the game. Making a soccer journal is one way of doing it. Before going to bed at night, take a few minutes to think about the day’s practice game and write how it went, things you did well, areas you need to improve and things to be thankful about both in and out of soccer. Journals are also great for setting strategies and goals for the game.
Relaxation is an important aspect of any sport activity. This is because relaxing helps us recover properly and prevent burnouts and reduced effectiveness. Our bodies and minds need a break from exertion so we need to take steps in getting a good rest, enjoying a fun activity and relaxing the tensions in our muscles and brains. The faster we recover, the more prepared we become for our other games and we emerge as better players in the process.
The WSU Team bringing you news and updates from the world of women’s football.