Children in Competitive Sport

A client approached me regarding their son. He had been selected for the European Boxing Championships. The only problem was he was selected for a weight class that he was now too heavy for. He was 13 years old and 1.6kg over the weight requirement.

It’s a difficult situation to be in. You know you can help the child lose the weight but being that he’s a growing child how can you do that safely and without causing injury.

Some would say that it’s best to let the child compete in the heavier weight class, but if you are a competitive parent who wants the best for their child you probably won’t want this a; because they haven’t been selected for that class and b; this could be your childs breakthrough into their chosen sport.

My advice to the client, after much research, was to trial making smaller portions, increase his carb intake slightly and consider his meal intake before the weigh in day and adjust accordingly.

The last thing I wanted to suggest was a complete diet overhaul and ruin what the child had already achieved by making him ill, lethargic or overweight.

If the child had been severely overweight I would have written a meal and exercise plan for him.

A child’s body goes through so much change as they grow that diet plays a massive role in providing the correct nutrients for them. They help a child’s body to use fat and protein for building and repairing tissue. Carbohydrates come in several different forms (sugars, starches, and fibre), but children should be eating more of the starches and fibres and less of the sugar.

If you have a child who needs help with diet, nutrition or exercise please contact me. Visit my website and take a look at the kids section for ideas and courses I have coming up.

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