Physiotherapy Pre and Post Match Tips
Preparation before a match (Pre Activity)
• Hydrate well prior to exercise by drinking a pint of water at least four hours
before the match. It is vital that you are not thirsty before you start as this is a sign
of dehydration and will impair performance.
• Before a match –eat well – cereal bar, raisins, sultanas or bananas are recommend -
sources of carbohydrates. Of all the factors that determine performance, diet is the
one that can most easily be altered!
• Warm up and stretch well before the match as more blood will be pumping around your body to
the working muscles to prepare them for exercise, thus reducing the likelihood of
• A gradual increase in heart rate for ten to fifteen minutes before playing is
• A dynamic warm up is encouraged before the match. This should consist of
Exercise’s which occur during a match, such as high knees, heel flicks, side
stepping, carioca, and back pedalling.
• Do not wear new football boots for the first time as you may be at risk of
• If you are carrying any injuries please seek the advice of your
Physiotherapist (Chartered, Sports Therapist or Physical Therapist) in helping you achieve full match fitness.
Preparation after a match (Post Activity)
• Hydrate and eat well immediately after a match. An isotonic drink is ideal so
carry the same in your gear bag. Loss of fluid and reduction in the body’s
carbohydrates stores are the two major causes of fatigue in sport.
• Try to cool down for ten minutes, with the aim to reduce your heart rate.
Statically stretch all muscle groups after a match as you will recover faster and
not feel as stiff and sore if you do!
• Use a foam roller to roll out any tightness in your muscles