Factors that influence an athlete’s physical performance include somatic factors, adaptation training, nutrition, cigarette, alcohol and caffeine consumption habits and an athlete’s psychological status. The somatic factors include sex, age, body size and health status, which influence the performance of athletes. All of these factors contribute to the supply of fuel energy through the process of intake, absorption and distribution of food in the body1.
Strategic efforts have been made to improve an athlete’s performance using scientific approaches including examining; the factors that influence performance, such as genetics, potential and basic capabilities, training and exercise programs, engineering skills and athletic skills, social conditions, infrastructures, facilities, weather and climate, psychological conditions, self-confidence and motivation and rewards as well as the function of organs and nutrition2.
Some issues related to nutrition are still commonly found in concerns about Indonesian athletes, particularly in regard to anthropometric measurements, biochemical, clinical and food intake factors. To ensure the best athlete’s performance results, it is important to progressively and continually improve these influential factors3. While nutrition is one of the essential elements that influences an athlete’s performance, it is often ignored by athletes, trainers and policy makers in Indonesia.
From the data presented above a new study was carried out which aimed to examine the nutritional factors that have an impact on athletes’ performance; it also aimed to determine the extent to which each factor influenced an athlete’s performance. The results can be used to reinforce that proper sports nutrition plays an important role in an athlete’s performance4.
The characteristics of the subjects’ medical history and habits were noted. It was noted that the magnitude of the significant relationship between the athletes’ performance and the predictor variables, which consist of exercise, heart rate, systolic and diastolic blood pressure, cholesterol, hematocrit and hemoglobin levels, mesomorph and ectomorph body types, intake of energy, protein, fat, carbohydrates, fluid intake, height for age, BMI for age, arm muscle, weight, BMR, BMI and height.
From the study it was noticed that nutritional factors were found to have the greatest impacts on an athlete’s performance are: BMI for age, ectomorph body type, heart rate and fluid intake. Exercise and nutritional factors were found to have a 72.5% impact on an athlete’s performance.
Based on the study’s findings, athletes, coaches and sports officials should be aware of the nutritional status of each player because it has a significant impact on an athlete’s performance. The limitation of the study was that the research is based on youth athletes that play football, therefore, nutrition and lifestyle might have a different impact on an athlete’s performance in other types of sports.
Alcohol, athlete, caffeine, cigarette, exercise, football, hydration, nutrition, an athlete’s performance, heart rate, systolic and diastolic blood pressure, cholesterol, hematocrit and hemoglobin levels, mesomorph and ectomorph body types, intake of energy, protein, fat, carbohydrates, fluid intake, height for age.
- Astrand, P.O., K. Rodahls, H.A. Dahl and S.B. Stromme, 2003. Textbook of Work Physiology: Physiological Bases of Exercise. 4th Edn., McGraw-Hill, Canada, pp: 237-239.
- Bompa, T.O., 1994. Theory and Methodology of Training. Kendall Hunt Publishing Co., Iowa, USA.,pp: 201-213.
- Garcia-Roves, P.M., P. Garcia-Zapico, A.M. Patterson and E. Iglesias-Gutierrez, 2014. Nutrient intake and food habits of soccer players: Analyzing the correlates of eating practice. Nutrients, 6: 2697-2717.
- Mirza H.P., Juffrie, M., Toto S. and Zaenal M.S., 2017. Correlation Between Nutritional Status and Lifestyle for Youth Soccer Athlete Performance: A Cohort Study. Pak. J. Nutr., 16: 895-905.