With only two weeks to go before the 8th ASEAN Para Games, preparations are in full swing for all Team Singapore athletes, and not just in the gym or on the pitch.
Team Singapore Cerebral Palsy footballers (in blue) and Singapore Sports Institute Sports Dietitians (in red) pose for a photo during the workshop. Photo: Sport Singapore
Members of the Team Singapore Cerebral Palsy (CP) football team participated in the second part of a nutrition workshop on Wednesday that taught them all they needed to know about eating for optimum recovery.
The workshop started off with an introduction to the basic food groups the body needs and the importance of recovery foods.
They were first taught to cook homemade muesli balls, chicken fried rice and pasta with prawns in creamy tomato sauce. After which, a Masterchef-style cook off followed between the players as they were divided into two groups.
“The theme of today’s session is eating for recovery, so we taught them how to prepare muesli balls that they can have as a portable recovery snack,” said Singapore Sports Institute (SSI) Associate Sports Dietitian Cheryl Teo, who led the workshop on Wednesday.
“It could be after training or after competition, so they can have it on the go before they have time to eat a proper meal.”
Teo explained the rationale behind teaching the athletes how to cook the easy and portable recovery snack.
“Essentially for recovery, our athletes will need a combination of carbohydrates, protein, fluids and electrolytes, and antioxidants,” she said.
“For the nut and muesli balls, it contains protein from the nuts and peanut butter, carbohydrates from the raisins and honey, rice crispies and oats that were added in. So if they have a drink on the side, that’s one recovery package for them.”
Team Singapore CP footballers preparing homemade muesli balls during the workshop. Photo: Sport Singapore
While eating the right foods may only be one aspect of athletic training and performance, it is nonetheless a very crucial one.
“Whatever energy that we need, for us to have a good performance on field, it all comes from food,” Teo said.
“It also enables your body to adapt to the training program. By having good training adaptations, it primes your body to perform better during competition.”
Team Singapore CP footballer Muhammad Danial Bin Ismail, who was at the workshop, said these workshops not only educate them about good nutrition, but it also gives them the chance to work on their team work off the pitch.
Danial and his team have been training very hard ahead of the Games, and he hopes Singaporeans can come down in full force to support them in December.
“Home crowd support means a lot to us because it gives us confidence when we are playing and also we will try our best to do it for them,” he said, issuing a rallying call to all Singaporeans.
“Come down and support us from 3 to 9 December. See you there!”