Jet lag, Get over it!

What can athletes do to avoid jet lag, then? The strongest data points to exogenous melatonin consumption and strategically timed light exposure as the two most effective ways to enhance adaptation. Additionally, having a good night's rest before a trip, staying hydrated while travelling, and adjusting to the timezone of your new destination as quickly as possible can all be beneficial.

Jet lag, Get over it!

Jet lag:

Don't Let Jet LagGet in the Way of Your Game: Tips for Athletes

 

For athletes who travel across time zones, jet lag may seem like a small inconvenience, but it can seriously affect their performance. Their over all performance and perception of exhaustion may be impacted by the weariness and changes to their body clock. So what steps can you take to avoid jet lag?

 

What precisely is jet lag and what causes it, first and foremost? When you cross numerous time zones, your circadian rhythm becomes out of sync with the new environment at your destination, which results in jet lag.

This may result in signs like disturbed sleep, daily weariness, gastrointestinal issues, and poor performance.

 

So, how does jet lag vary from travel tiredness in terms of symptoms? The inconveniences and demands of travel, such as preparing for the flight, are linked to travel tiredness. Elite athletes who frequently travel in sports like basketball and hockey frequently run into this problem. On the other hand, jet lag is connected to the body's resynchronisation to the new environment. Jet lag and travel tiredness may have similar symptoms, but they are brought on by different components of travel.

 

What impact does jet lag have on athletes' performance in different sports? Although there isn't much proof that jet lag affects performance in professional athletes, we do know that teams travelling west for evening matches are at a disadvantage.

 

Is it important which way you're going—east or west—to you? Westward travel is typically seen to be simpler to adapt to. The circadian system must delay or shift backwards in order to catch up with the local time zone after travelling west. The circadian system will be operating behind the local time zone after travelling east, thus it will need to advance or shift forwards, which could be more challenging.

 

Is there anything we can eat or take in terms of medicine to lessen the affects of jet lag? Unfortunately, neither proper research nor effective treatments for jet lag exist.

 

What can athletes do to avoid jet lag, then? The strongest data points to exogenous melatonin consumption and strategically timed light exposure as the two most effective ways to enhance adaptation. Additionally, having a good night's rest before a trip, staying hydrated while travelling, and adjusting to the timezone of your new destination as quickly as possible can all be beneficial.

 

Avoid letting jet lag affect your performance. Use these advice to prevent it and maintain your performance.

1. A few days prior to your travel, gradually adjust your sleep routine to be more in line with the time zone of your destination. Making daily 15–30 minute changes to your bedtime and wake-up time will assist your body's internal clock adjust to the new time zone and ease the adjustment.

2. Management of Light Exposure: Light exposure is essential for controlling our circadian cycle. When you get at your destination, try to get some daylight exposure because it will help your body's internal clock to adjust. Contrarily, stay away from strong light in the evening, especially blue light from electronics, as it might inhibit melatonin release and postpone the start of sleep.

3. Keep Hydrated and Avoid Alcohol and Caffeine: Dehydration can make jet lag symptoms worse. Drink a lot of water before, during, and after your flight to stay hydrated. Caffeine and alcohol might cause you to become dehydrated while also making it enticing to drink them. It's advisable to limit or completely prevent your intake of them.

4. Controlled napping might help you fight fatigue and acclimatise to a new time zone. 20 to 30 minute power naps might provide you a rapid energy boost without disturbing your overnight sleep. It can be difficult to fall asleep at night if you take long naps or nap too close to going to bed.

5. Supplemental melatonin: Melatonin is a hormone that controls the sleep-wake cycle. Melatonin supplements can help you adjust your circadian rhythm and encourage sleep in the new time zone. Take one an hour before bed. Before utilising melatonin, you must, however, speak with a healthcare provider who can advise you on the right dosage and timing.

Just keep in mind that everyone reacts differently to jet lag, even though these tactics can assist. It's crucial to pay attention to your body, put a high priority on getting enough sleep, and adjust to the new time zone gradually.

Travel safely!

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