Just as the earth has different seasons such as winter, summer, spring, and autumn, so does training have different seasons. Each season has a specific purpose and plays an integral role in the success of the athlete. For example, without winter, we wouldn’t have maple syrup and hockey here in Canada.
Respecting and following the training seasons will allow the athlete to:
When athletes train at maximal all year round, they are at a higher risk of injuring themselves, and may not peak at the right time to perform adequately during their competition.
Some sports aren’t condensed to having competitions during one specific time of the year; they can be spread over very many months. For these particular sports, the trainers will map out on a calendar all of the required competitions for the sport (the most important ones), and will create the training cycles to accommodate those particular tournaments.
Very often, athletes and their parents forget the importance of the rest period and will push to play other high-level sports during the time that should be their rest period.
Now, keep in mind that this rule applies mainly to athletes who play very competitively. The athlete who plays one sport only a couple of times a week won’t have to adhere to these seasons. They are meant for athletes who play very competitively. Young hockey players in AA or AAA often practice three times a week and play once to twice a week. If they are on more than one team at a time, then they will often have two practices a day 3-5 times a week plus their games. For athletes like this, rest is extremely important.
Just like how our body recovers during sleep, an athlete’s body will recover during the rest period allowing them to be able to push harder when they begin the next season.
The Off-Season: During this season, the sports massage therapist will help the athlete balance their body, and recover from the increasing intensity of training.
The Preseason: During this season, the sports massage therapist will help to release and activate the muscles in order to increase performance.
The In-Season: During this season, the athlete’s goal is to perform, so the goal of the sports massage therapist is to help them with their performance. The sports massage therapist will help the muscles heal and maintain their mobility.
The Postseason: During this season, the sports massage therapist will be able to help balance the body, recover physically and increase any restrictions to range of motion due to repetitive movements.
Learn how Sports Massage can help you become a better Athlete.