> Less than 2 hours before the game: Very light or no eating. Fluids only
> 2 hours before the game: Carbohydrate meal ie pasta, spagetti or rice. Keep sauces and meat to a minimum.
> More than 2 hours before the game: Good breakfast - nothing heavy like sausages, bacon etc.
> After the game: plenty of water and maybe a banana to replenish the muscles.
On top of your normal meals: bananas, fruits - contains potassium and other good things to feed the muscles - and helps lessen cramping during the game.
To last a 90 minute game and to be competitive, it is important that between games there is an adequate fitness regime. This will be mostly covered by your training sessions but
it is also good to do a bit yourself in your own time.
This could be as simple as walking up a flight of stairs instead of taking the elevator, kicking the ball out back during the week with mates, playing tennis, going for a run, gym etc. This
will add to the level of fitness in addition to the organised training and the game. It'll also help you in the off-season.
Stretching and warming up
Four things are important in reducing the likelihood of injury during a game:
1. Good diet to prevent cramping, straining of the muscles.
2. Good stretching before any warming up or game or activity. It is just as important to stretch after the game because all the muscles are tight.
3. Good warming up / warm down before and after any activity / game.
4. Good fitness between games - training sessions and personal training.
All muscles should be stretched. Hold the stretch for 10 seconds then release for 10 seconds. Two to three times on each muscle. Do not bounce while stretching. Just stretch and hold.
The most important muscles to be stretched are: quads, calves (the back and the side ones), gluts, ankles, hamstrings, neck, lower back, groin, stomach, knees.
All the areas stretched will eventually be warmed up in the warming up session. A lap of the field followed by some sprints, push ups / sit ups will get the blood moving and the muscles warmed up for the proper football training session.