Understanding the how and the why of supplementing your energy supply throughout your matchdays is critical if you are to truly maximise your abilities when it counts. All of the sprinting, jumping, accelerating and decelerating will take a significant toll on your carbohydrate stores, hydration levels and branch chain amino acids (BCAA). Some of the more common side effects of depleting these are tiredness, reduced physical and cognitive performance, and in more serious cases injury. A sound, personalised strategy for your matchdays will ensure you are never left wanting for extra energy during the 90 minutes. To start to put that strategy together, first you must understand the types of energy your body will need pre, during and post matches.
Football relies heavily on carbohydrate to fuel the intense actions such as sprinting, jumping, changing direction and shooting that often dictate the outcome of games. The issue is, stores of carbohydrate in the body are very small and are used up rapidly.
In this article we look at the role of energy gels in football, what they are, why you need them, and how they can help you up your game.