It’s awesome to see everyone back at Patriot Aquatics and we are so excited for what this summer has to offer everyone!
Our community, country, and the entire globe has learned many things from this epidemic. One of the major lessons is adaptation. The nationwide reaction to COVID-19 has taught businesses and civilians to adjust and adapt their lifestyles to meet a completely new set of standards and expectations for the betterment of everyone around them. Like every other new thing, we’re sure the adaptation period felt a little awkward at first for everybody. And while many things have a hint of “normal life”, there’s still a feeling of unfamiliarity which will continue to linger and develop as new standards and expectations are made.
It’s important to understand this principle of adaptation in our little sport as well. Our pool decks, coaching staff, and athletes have adapted every detail to be as safe as possible! And as we continue to move forward, we need to remember that everyone around us is also adjusting to this new way of life. And everything feels as unfamiliar to them, as well. We should remember to be patient and understanding, and cooperative so this adjustment process will be as smooth as possible.
On that same note, we should also remember to be patient and understanding with ourselves as we are adapting back to pool life. Below are some tips for this re-adaptation process as we ease ourselves back into regular pool practices!
Tips for the re-adaption process
– Stretch frequently. Spending just 10-15 minutes before and practice to loosen up our muscles is even more crucial right now! Find an extra time when you’re at home to do some additional stretching. This will reduce the chances of injury and aid recovery as your body starts to adjust back to pool life.
– Use resistance bands to warm up shoulders. The muscles located on our shoulders and upper back are not just a couple of large muscles working together. It’s a whole system. There are many other smaller muscles that are all being used simultaneously as we are passing, swimming, and shooting. The use of resistance bands, and running through a series of motions offers a very holistic way of strengthening all of these different muscles so they are balanced and working together properly. Your shoulder’s strength and durability will improve and your chances of injury will also go down dramatically!
– Eat nutritious meals. Fruits, vegetables, carbohydrates, proteins, and healthy fats are all big parts of a healthy diet. They’ll make sure our body is at it’s best.
– Drink plenty of water. Water plays a huge role in recovery! It helps our bodies digest vital nutrients, as well as repairing the muscles we use after exercise. A good standard would be about 8 glasses a day.
– Get plenty of rest! Don’t spend all night playing Fortnite or streaming your favorite shows. Make sure you go to bed at a decent hour and give yourself 8-9 hours of sleep, every night. Sleeping is critical for our bodies and minds during recovery.
– Be patient with yourself. Give yourself proper expectations for the first couple of weeks and be mentally tough. It will take a period of time before our bodies will be performing the way they used to! If you’re disappointed because water polo practices feel a little more difficult than it used to, it’s okay! Everyone is coming off a break from the pool and going through the exact same rebuilding process. Coaches are aware and are modifying workouts so you can ease your way back into pool life without injuring yourself!
With all of these little actions, our re-adaptation process back into ‘water polo life’ will go smoothly. And parents, coaches, and athletes will find themselves back into full swing and even better than before!