prohabits-92-2016-1-51GIt’s been said that all it takes to be successful is to find someone else who has achieved what you want, and do what they do. Aristotle once said, “We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.” In this vein, there is incredible insight to be gained from the habits of elite athletes, in this case top polo players. While not everyone has the tools to compete at a professional level, mirroring the habits of those who do will help you get in better shape and improve your polo performance.

These are the most common athlete habits that should be mirrored with polo in mind for those who want to play like a professional:

1- Envision Success

Most players recognize that a significant proportion of performance is mental. Yet it’s uncommon for most of us to spend any time on mind training and preparation. Elite athletes frequently report visualizing their success before it happens. By playing a “mental movie” of their victories in upcoming tournaments, they not only improve their performance, but also calm their nerves. The clearer the visualization, the more powerful the impact.

2- Consume Sports Drinks

Optimal performance hinges on optimal fuel and hydration. Top polo players consume sports drinks with easily digested carbohydrates and electrolytes. Consuming a sports drink during competition and practices also helps maintain blood glucose levels within the normal range so players don’t have peaks and crashes in their energy levels.

3- Follow An Individualized Training Program

Most high-level polo players benefit from training under the supervision of a coach. Athletes will get better results following a structured program than they will on their own. It’s human nature to focus on what you’re good at, which isn’t always what you need. By following a professionally designed training program, players are more likely to improve their weaknesses and overall performance and decrease their injury risk. Quality training often allows less-skilled players to compete at higher levels and can add years to a career.

4- Set Goals

Nothing ensures success like setting goals and constantly working towards them. Goals can be performance or habit based. Performance goals could be something like, “;;I will score all the penalties in the next game”. When completing a strategy, play is dependent upon a team work, habit goals are less dependent on external influences. As an example, a related habit goal could be, “;;I will make sure my head is up before making every pass.” Other habit goals can be things like always drinking a post-workout shake or always going to bed at a specific time. Setting goals provides structure and constant motivation, which ensures continual progress.

5- Pre And Post Training Nutrition

Providing proper fuel before and after both training and competition can have a significant impact on performance and recovery. Polo players must make sure they get the nutrition they need to maximize their intensity, energy and recovery. Pre-activity, this can be as simple as a meal with lean protein, vegetables and whole-grain rice. The goal is to ingest the right nutrients to provide the athlete the energy he needs. Afterwards, the goal is recovery. Post-workout , the body is “;;primed” for shuttling carbohydrates into the muscle to replenish depleted energy stores and for stimulating protein synthesis (muscle rebuilding). Foods that contain carbohydrate and protein can do the trick.

So, whether you are a pro or amateur polo player, you can benefit from these habits. If you have any doubts or questions, please contact us at, until then, keep healthy and stay active!

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