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10 Steps to Becoming a High-Performance Athlete: Step 3 – Rest and Recovery

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Rest and Recovery

Sleep is one of the most important forms of rest and provides time for the body

to adapt to the physical and mental demands of training.

- Make sure you’re getting enough sleep (8 hours per night is a good guideline).

- Ensure your sleep is good quality, make sure the room is dark, quiet and peaceful.

Passive resting such as reading and listening to music are great ways for the body to relax, both physically and mentally. The ‘cool down’ is a group of exercises performed immediately after training to provide an adjustment between exercise and rest. Its purpose is to decrease muscular soreness and bring the cardiovascular system back to rest. Stretching is often combined with the cool down.

Massage is also a great way to relax. The physical benefits of a massage following exercise include:

- Increased blood flow, enhanced oxygen and nutrient delivery to fatigued muscles

- Increased removal of lactic acid

- Warming and stretching of soft tissues, increasing flexibility, works through knots and adhesions 

- In addition to the physical benefits, massage has been reported to help improve mood state and help increase relaxation and reduce feelings of fatigue.

 

 

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