There are a lot of great reasons to participate in sports. Not only can it keep you physically healthy, it can keep you mentally healthy too. Not to mention, it’s a great way to build friendships and push yourself to be the best you that you can be.
That doesn’t mean participating in sports is easy.
If you want to be successful, no matter what sport you play, you have to be good. If you feel like you aren’t competing at your best, try one of these performance-boosting tips.
1. The Right Pair of Shoes
Nearly every sport requires shoes. It doesn’t matter if you’re running long distances, if you’re shimmying back and forth on the tennis court, or you’re on the football field, having the right pair of shoes is extremely important.
Getting a high-quality pair of shoes means skipping the discount stores and choosing brands that are known for their performance. To make sure you’re getting the right pair, try on different styles and brands in person.
If you decide to go shopping online, you can get some great discounts. Find a Foot Locker coupon and you could save big. That way, getting the right shoes for you won’t cost a fortune.
2. Know What to Eat and Drink
What you eat and drink has a huge effect on how you feel. Even if you aren’t an athlete, eating the wrong foods can leave you feeling sluggish, while the right foods can make you feel energized to tackle anything that may come your way.
When it comes to eating and drinking as an athlete, there are some basic tips you can follow. Getting plenty of fluids, snacking smart, and eating after a workout can boost your performance.
Looking for more specific tips to try?
- Avoid simple sugars, and instead focus on eating complex carbohydrates
- Add plenty of protein to your diet if you exercise for over two hours at a time
- Eat less and drink more during your workouts
3. Get Support
No one does anything alone, even if you do choose a solitary sport. One of the best ways to get athletic support is to hire a coach. The right coach can help you craft workouts that work for you, encourage you to perform at the highest level, and they can even find opportunities for you to compete.
A coach isn’t always an option. If you don’t have enough money, or you don’t live in an area where coaches are available for your specific sport, consider a mentor instead.
Mentors are great for any area of life. They are common in the office, but they are great for athletes too. A mentor can provide you with insider information and support. They can also be a great sounding board for when you’re feeling frustrated, disappointed, or you simply need someone to remind you why you you’re training so hard.
4. Compete with Yourself
Competition is partly what makes sports so much fun. Beating an opponent is a great feeling, especially when you have spent so much time mastering your sport. Unfortunately, it comes with plenty of drawbacks too.
Comparing yourself to other people is a recipe for disaster. There will always be someone better than you. That’s why, instead, you should only compete with yourself.
Increase your stamina so that you can work out longer than you did a year ago. Get a better time than you did a month ago, and jog a little further than you did yesterday. That way, even if you lose, you’ll still be encouraged to keep going because your goal is to do better than you did before—not just win at all costs.
5. Master Your Brain
When most athletes think about boosting performance, they think about what they can eat and how they can exercise harder. However, it’s important to think about how your brain affects your performance too.
Every athlete needs to spend time mastering his or her own brain. There are quite a few ways to calm anxiety and visualize improvement, but one of the best ways is meditation. It can help you:
- Focus on winning the next game
- Cope with pain
- Strengthen your immune system
- Decrease rumination
- Decrease stress
- Increase resilience
It can also help you bounce back more quickly after a loss or a disappointing day at the gym.
There are a lot of things you can do to boost your athletic performance. The ideas on this list are a great way to get started! Choose one or two things on this list and your performance will improve in no time.