Athletics involves various sports which require physical strength, endurance and speed. Athletes undergo numerous training programs which help them perform exceptionally in their field of sport. A balanced diet, well-planned training are the key factors that affect an athlete’s performance. The athletic training is categorized on the basis of time period with respect to the actual competition. There are four well-planned programs, all of which focus on overall development, improvement and performance of an athlete.
The Four Training Programs Are
Pre-Season: This is a 8 to 12 week training prior to the competition.
The Goals Of This Program Are
- Developing the respective sport specific muscle-strengthening and endurance
- Appropriately developing Aerobic and anaerobic conditioning
- Increasing muscle power
- Developing skills and team play required for the sport
In Season: The training to be undertaken during the actual season
- Maintaining the achievements of pre-season training
- Paying full attention to the risky areas of body, specially the parts which were injured in the past
- Well-maintenance of the most important parts required for the sports
Post-Season: This is a 3 to 4 week training after finishing the competition
- The Post-Season is a period of rest
- The training focuses on both physical and mental recovery
Off-Season: The longest time period between the post-season and and pre-season training calls for a off-season training
- The off-season training mainly focuses on overall development
- Major factors involve developing neuromuscular strength and coordination
- Balancing the strength and endurance of muscles
- Recovery from injuries that happened during the event
- Overall conditioning of the muscles and body
Athletic training not only focuses on physical strength building but also on the nutrition of the athlete. It is very important for an athlete to consume protein and carbohydrates. Choosing fresh food over canned, nutritious food over fatty meals, consuming brown rice instead of white rice can help the athlete in staying fit and composed. Avoiding tobacco is a crucial part of athletics.
It is important to note that excess training can cause problems and does not favor an athletes performance. Symptoms of can excess training include:
- Loss of appetite
- Mood swings
- Disturbed sleeps
- Muscle soreness
- Lack of competitive spirit
All athletes must be trained for overall fitness and sport specific skills. Different sports need strength and endurance of different muscles. For example, Sprinters, Throwers and Jumpers are most benefited from Agility and Conditioning exercises along with Back and Abdomen workouts. Hence specific exercises are designed to boost the performance of the athletes. Along with best training, the complete active involvement of an athlete is also an added advantage.