How to recover the day after a game

“I can hardly walk the day after a game. How can I avoid being so achy?”

Damien Moore, via email


Sam Erith says:

"Before playing, acclimatise your body to the stress it will be put under during a game or else you’ll be sore the next day. Replicate match conditions by incorporating change of speed and direction drills.

Refuel within half an hour of the game finishing – that’s the best time for muscles to recoup energy. A milk chocolate drink gives you protein and carbohydrate in one hit.

An ice bath will definitely get rid of aches and pains in the short term. Aim for 10 minutes at 10 degrees.

Eat green veg and foods high in carbohydrates and protein within two hours of the match to replenish your depleted energy stores. Add spices like ginger which will help to boost your recovery.

Make sure you get at least eight hours sleep and avoid alcohol, TV and caffeine an hour before you finally hit the sack.

The day after a game, hit the bike or pool for 30 minutes. Then stretch all the key muscle groups for 30 seconds. Make use of a foamroller [available in gyms and easy to buy online] to massage tight spots."

For more football tips:
Recovery rules for football
Recovery: A how to guide
Shane Long's rules to recovery
Micah Richards: Recharge your batteries for the next game
Post match recovery starts here...
Bobby Zamora on recovery
Bedtime at the Theatre of Dreams
How to sleep yourself sharp

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