Nutritional recommendations for water polo

Gregory R. Cox, Iñigo Mujika, Cees Rein Van Den Hoogenband

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Water polo is an aquatic team sport that requires endurance, strength, power, swimming speed, agility, tactical awareness, and specific technical skills, including ball control. Unlike other team sports, few researchers have examined the nutritional habits of water polo athletes or potential dietary strategies that improve performance in water polo match play. Water polo players are typically well muscled, taller athletes; female players display higher levels of adiposity compared with their male counterparts. Positional differences exist: Center players are heavier and have higher body fat levels compared with perimeter players. Knowledge of the physical differences that exist among water polo players offers the advantage of player identification as well as individualizing nutrition strategies to optimize desired physique goals. Individual dietary counseling is warranted to ensure dietary adequacy, and in cases of physique manipulation. Performance in games and during quality workouts is likely to improve by adopting strategies that promote high carbohydrate availability, although research specific to water polo is lacking. A planned approach incorporating strategies to facilitate muscle glycogen refueling and muscle protein synthesis should be implemented following intensified training sessions and matches, particularly when short recovery times are scheduled. Although sweat losses of water polo players are less than what is reported for land-based athletes, specific knowledge allows for appropriate planning of carbohydrate intake strategies for match play and training. Postgame strategies to manage alcohol intake should be developed with input from the senior player group to minimize the negative consequences on recovery and player welfare.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)382-391
Number of pages10
JournalInternational Journal of Sport Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism
Volume24
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2014
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

dietary recommendations
Water
athletes
sports
Athletes
water
Sports
fatigue strength
Carbohydrates
sweat
diet counseling
carbohydrate intake
Muscle Proteins
Sweat
Adiposity
muscle protein
adiposity
Glycogen
body fat
glycogen

Cite this

Cox, Gregory R. ; Mujika, Iñigo ; Van Den Hoogenband, Cees Rein. / Nutritional recommendations for water polo. In: International Journal of Sport Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism. 2014 ; Vol. 24, No. 4. pp. 382-391.
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Nutritional recommendations for water polo. / Cox, Gregory R.; Mujika, Iñigo; Van Den Hoogenband, Cees Rein.

In: International Journal of Sport Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism, Vol. 24, No. 4, 01.01.2014, p. 382-391.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

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