Sleep is a Weapon
Let me start by saying that 8 hours of sleep is just like the 2000 calories per day thing, thanks to science we no longer have to debate about wether one of the Below influencers are important or not, it s now only a matter of how much ..
The modern elite athlete knows that physical conditioning and good nutrition are critical in reaching peak athletic performance; however, sleep, while often overlooked, plays an equally important role. In recent years, it’s become clear that the quality and quantity of sleep obtained by elite athletes can be the edge between winning and losing on game-day
Some areas sleep has the greatest impact on performance.
IMPROVED REACTION TIMES
Elite athletes can’t spare even fractions of a second to react to a play unfolding in front of them. Sleep deprivation is known to reduce reaction times significantly. Even a single all-nighter can reduce reaction times by more than 300%, not to mention recovering takes several days. Moderate sleep deprivation produces impairments in cognitive and motor performance equivalent to legally prescribed levels of alcohol intoxication – Williamson A, Feyer A. (2000)
REDUCED INJURY RATES, IMPROVED OVERALL HEALTH
A University of California study concluded that injury rates in youth athletes increased during games that followed a night of sleep fewer that 6 hours.
Why is this the case? The first point, fatigue affects the body’s immune system, making players more susceptible to illness. Secondly, shorter sleep periods don’t provide the body with sufficient time to regenerate cells and repair from the abuse of workouts, games, and daily activities. Over time, game-earned injuries, health issues, and the inability to fully recover can wear on an athlete and contribute to more time spent on the sidelines. — Smith C., Luke A, et al. (2011) and Milewski MD, et al. (2014)
LONGER PLAYING CAREERS
Beyond acute injuries, one recent study on MLB players has shown fatigue can shorten the playing careers (and therefore income) of professional athletes. “We were shocked by how linear the relationship was,” said the principal investigator W. Christopher Winter, MD, medical director of the Martha Jefferson Hospital Sleep Medicine Center in Charlottesville, Va. -Winter C M.D
FEWER MENTAL ERRORS
Sleep loss impairs judgement. Studies have shown motivation, focus, memory, and learning to be impaired by shortened sleep. Without sleep, the brain struggles to consolidate memory and absorb new knowledge.
Final thoughts, for all of us, sleep is an important component of maintaining optimum health. For elite athletes, however, sleep becomes a crucial pillar of success. Reaction times and motor function, motivation, focus, stress regulation, muscle recovery, sprint performance, muscle glycogen, glucose metabolism, memory and learning, injury risk, illness rates, unwanted weight gain…. sleep (or lack thereof) plays a part in all of these things. And sleep, as more and more athletes are learning, has a big impact on performance, wins, and losses.- Sam Ramsden,
Few are blessed with genes to reach the highest level faster ., but we all know that practice beats talents ., and here all we are asked to do .. is to sleep few more hours.
Rita Abreu text