When it comes to nutrition, hydration, and making good choices with drugs and alcohol, there is no such thing as having too much information.
Students at Amherst Steele high school enjoyed a three-day health seminar from April 13-15 that devoted a day to each of those issues.
Track coaches Rob Glatz and Terry Kemp kicked things off by stressing the importance of nutrition for young athletes.
“Nutrition is the heart of our track team, and of most high school athletic competition,” said Glatz. “I tell my athletes that if they want to eat McDonald’s, to do it in the offseason. They need to realize the degree in which eating food like that will hinder their athletic performance.”
“If you can teach them even just a little about this, it will help them make better decisions in their lives as a whole,” said Kemp.
Day two saw medical technology teacher Kim Haney talk about hydration, and how it is an easy thing for even an athlete to forget about.
“Eighty percent of high school athletes show up to practice and events dehydrated,” said Haney. “Forgetfulness can be attributed to things as simple as being busy. Also, it’s easy to forget that sugary drinks do not provide the same benefits that water does. You only really need something like Gatorade if you are working out for more than an hour, or in a hot environment.”
Haney added that phone apps such as iDrated and AddWater can greatly help people who find it difficult to keep up their water intake.
Darrell Shumpert of The LCADA Way closed out the sessions by touching on all of the ways drugs and alcohol can hurt young athletes and students — health, athletic performance, and loss of opportunities that come through punishment for substance abuse.
“There are always people who think they know more than your doctor,” Shumpert told students. “Never allow anyone to hand you a drug even when it is supposed to improve your performance. Practice is what makes you a better athlete, not drugs.”
Comets athetic director Casey Wolf also presented a new code of conduct for student-athletes: a 20 percent season ban for a first offense with drugs or alcohol, 50 percent for a second, and a full-season ban after a third.
Jonathan Delozier can be reached at 440-988-2801 or @DelozierNews on Twitter.
Photos by Jonathan Delozier | Amherst News-Times
Track coaches Terry Kemp and Rob Glatz after talking with students about making good nutrition choices.