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The importance of nutrition for junior rowers

Often, teenage rowers are presented with nutritional facts without a corresponding explanation of how to introduce them into daily eating. Adolescent athletes participating in any endurance sport have unique and increased nutritional demands for both macronutrients, e.g., energy, carbohydrate, protein and fat, and also micronutrients, e.g., iron, vitamin D and calcium. These demands are not only to meet their needs for growth and development, but also to provide optimal performance during training and recovery, to meet competition goals and prevent risk of injury and infections. In rowing, both anaerobic (20-30 per cent) and aerobic (70-80 per cent) energy systems are maximised. Nutritional status is a key determinant of athletic success, and could give the extra millisecond’s advantage in a race and make the difference between winning and losing.

Special needs and requirements

Coaches and parents, with all good intentions, may inadvertently give misleading non-evidenced-based information. This can be further complicated by media input intended for adults that is quickly absorbed by young athletes, with possible detrimental effects.

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About Row360

Welcome to Row360, the world’s only global, independent rowing magazine. Row360 brings you features from around the world, profiling the best athletes, coaches, and others from the whole rowing community – Olympic, Paralympic, college, club, ocean, and more.