Top 10 Guide For Your Child’s Youth Football Success
10- The Right Gear – Youth football athletes need the right equipment for optimal play. Read product reviews for youth football cleats, gloves and other gear for insight.
9- Sleep well – Make sure your child has a minimum of 7-8 hours of sleep nightly, especially before game day. A recent study done by Dr. Eve Van Cauter (from the University of Chicago Medical School) highlighted the importance of proper rest. Van Cauter findings show sleep deprivation can negatively impact the free-flowing process of functions that is critical for athletic performance – glucose metabolism and cortisol status. Glucose and glycogen (stored glucose) are key sources of energy for athletes. Those who do not sleep enough may experience slower storage of glycogen, which prevents storage of the fuel a youth football athlete needs for optimal play.
8- Nutrition is key – 2 key points (1) Stay away from fast food , (2) Don’t skip breakfast. Before the game, a meal consisting of ‘good’ carbohydrates/ proteins/ fats can help your child be a standout youth football player. Assuming your child has no food allergies, here are some great pre-game choices- oats (oatmeal), natural peanut butter with fresh fruit on whole wheat bread, whole grain cereals, bananas, avocados and pastas. After the game, while your child’s teammates are fighting for their place on line at the local fast food restaurant, provide your child a protein rich meal.
7- Attend a reputable youth football camp – Can be found by doing an internet search on football camp and the city in which you live in. These are great for reinforcing fundamentals in youth football.
6- Hand / Eye drills – Play catch with your youth football athlete. Start 5 yards apart. Begin with slow tosses and gradually increase the intensity of the throws. Next, go 10 yards apart and repeat. A drill we also recommend is wall ball using a tennis ball. To perform this is quite simple- stand 4 feet away from a wall- with the left hand behind the back, the right hand will begin tossing the tennis ball against the wall. Start slow, increase intensity. Alternate hands. Stand directly behind your child and have him toss you the tennis ball (over his shoulder) while you throw it back to towards the wall. Work with your youth football athlete a few times a week. It’s an opportunity for you to have great one on one time.
5- Footwork drills – Key drills include jump-rope, tire jumps and agility stations. If you have adequate space in your backyard a circuit training course could be fun for both you and your child.
4- Proper hydration – The sports drink market is a multi-billion dollar business in the U.S.; they’re awesome at marketing their products. Though, we’re not fooled. These sports drinks are often contain high fructose corn syrup which has been linked to obesity and metabolic conditions. We prefer ice water , it will do the trick. Have your child drink water before, during and after youth football practices and games. Even though this is #4 on our guide for Your child’s youth football success we cannot stress the importance of hydration enough.
3- Study instructional DVDs/ Books/ Online videos – Instructional media for skilled positions are widely available. Study plays with your child, it helps!
2- Workouts – Start with a stretching routine. Let’s not neglect the importance of stretching as it increases flexibility and improves range of motion for your youth football athlete. Next, have your child follow a workout plan consisting of push-ups, pull-ups and sprints.
1- Confidence builders – This is the top tip on our top 10 guide for your child’s youth football success. Lack of self confidence can be the greatest barrier that prevents youth football athletes from achieving their peak performance. Always be positive, accentuate your child’s best attributes. Try this, ‘You had a great week at practice, I have confidence you, your team has confidence in you, now go out there and give it your best!’
I hope this Top 10 Guide For Your Child’s Youth Football Success was helpful.