Sleeps plays a major role in athletic performance and competitive results. The quality and amount of sleep athletes get is often key to winning and loosing games. If sleep is cut short, the body does not have time to repair and consolidate memory and release hormones. Athletic performance declines in split-second decision making following poor sleep.

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Sleep deprivation increases levels of stress hormones and cortisol. Less sleep increases the possibilities of fatigue, low energy and poor focus at game time. It also slows post-game recover. Sleeping better and longer (REM sleep) leads to improvements in athletic performance, including faster sprint times, lower heart rate and even improved mood and higher levels of energy during a practice workout or game. Also, has a big impact on performance and wins and losses.

“Fatigue makes cowards of us all.” – Vince Lombardi.

Five areas that sleep has the greatest impact on athletic performance:

  1. Improved reaction times
  2. Reduced injury rates and improved overall health
  3. Longer playing careers
  4. Better accuracy and faster sprint times
  5. Fewer mental errors

A athlete / team that recognizes the trends and takes steps to reverse / slow it by enacting fatigue mitigating strategies, especially in the middle / late season, can gain a large competitive edge (advantage) over their opponent. Sleep is a crucial pillar for athletic success and performance. Sleep is a weapon.

 

Why Sleep Training Should Be Part of Sports Teams’ Winning Traditions – Brendan Duffy