We all know football as a sport but how can the fitness side of football be a beneficial fitness activity for kids in the UAE?
Football is a great workout and its also lots of fun. It is an outdoor sport and there are many health benefits from playing football. Such as lowering body fat, increasing cardiovascular health, improving strength and muscle tone and many more! I think it’s a very good sport for kids to get involved in not just because it’s really good for your health but its also a fun sport so it doesn’t get boring.
As a ‘group sport’ is football fitness training best suited to a group activity or can training be on a 1-2-1 basis too?
There are many different ways you can train to get fit to play football. I think the younger players and those who are looking to just play for fun are best suited to group activity as it’s a lot more fun and enjoyable and will get more out of it. But personal football training can be done on an individual basis as well. More suited for the older player who is looking to take it up a level and be more focused on improving certain aspects of their game.
What are the main health benefits for growing children who regularly play/practice football?
There are many health benefits for children playing football as they grow up such as improving aerobic capacity and increases muscle and bone strength. Also teaches co-ordination. Mentally it improves confidence, self esteem and helps reduce stress. Which are all important factors for good overall health.
As a football personal trainer/coach in the UAE do you also have any tips on diet and nutrition that can benefit kids in the UAE who are looking to increase the level of their gameplay/general fitness?
Tip number 1 – make sure you stay hydrated! Drink before, during and after training. While training take little sips often rather than drinking loads at one time to avoid bloating and an upset stomach.
Tip number 2 – 3-4 hours before training make sure you are getting in complex carbs e.g rice and pasta. This will help keep energy levels high while training and then after consume more to replenish glycogen stores.
Tip number 3 – make sure you’re eating a balanced diet as is it essential for growth and development.
How many times per week would you recommend football training for general fitness?
As many times as you can! practice, practice and more practice. The more you train the better you will get as a football player technically and physically. In terms of fitness the more times you are training the better your stamina will be and means you will be able to play for longer and stay at the top of your game.
It seems that more and more children in the UAE take no extra-curricular exercise or sporting activity. Can you sum up why you think football is a good way to get away from this trend?
One of the reasons football is popular all round the world is because its cheap, you don’t need much space. You can use jumpers for goalposts and anything round for a ball. Anyone can join in big or small, old or young. The rules are simple and everyone loves kicking a ball! Once you start, you don’t want to stop!
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