Carbohydrate Needs of Masters Athletes

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterEducationpeer-review


The importance of carbohydrate as a substrate for exercise has formed a cornerstone of sports nutrition advice for the past four decades.1 New information has emerged throughout this period which has changed our understanding of the needs of athletes and the advice provided to them regarding their daily training carbohydrate intake and competition carbohydrate strategies.2 For endurance athletes, the availability of carbohydrate as a substrate for the working muscle and the central nervous system is well known and subsequently reflected in sports nutrition guidelines. Although not as widely acknowledged, carbohydrate availability is also likely to influence an athlete’s performance of intermittent, high-intensity exercise of shorter duration and repeated explosive exercise activities.3, 4 And finally, success in skill sports that require high level cognitive tasks and complex motor skills are also likely to be affected by carbohydrate availability, as carbohydrate is the most important fuel for the central nervous system. Carbohydrate is therefore an important component of an athlete’s diet. While the importance of carbohydrate is widely acknowledged in younger athletes, little if any empirical research has examined the carbohydrate needs of older exercisers in general and masters athletes in particular. In this chapter we will review current principles for dietary carbohydrate instruction and provide practical strategies, in the context of masters athletes.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationNutrition and Performance in Masters Sthletes
EditorsPeter Reaburn
Place of PublicationFlorida
PublisherCRC Press
Number of pages19
ISBN (Electronic)9780429066122
ISBN (Print)13:978-1-4398-7187-4
Publication statusPublished - 18 Aug 2014


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