Sports Science is gaining huge attention in this decade. From amateurs to aspirants to professionals, every individual who hopes to enhance his/ her performance is now relying on science to understand how his/ her body reacts to exercise, training, and other stimuli such as environment change. In order to enhance sports performance, athletes and coaches need to create a balance of training intensity and frequency. While low intensity and frequency of training could lead to under-performance due to non-realization of maximum potential, high intensity and frequency of training could lead to overstress or illness, and eventually under-performance. Hence coordinated efforts of athletes, coaches and scientists is recommended.
To better understand Sports Science, we interviewed Mr. Nikhil Latey from Sportsmed Activ, a wholly owned subsidiary of Sportsmed Mumbai. Sportsmed Mumbai, a super-specialty orthopedic centre that offers comprehensive arthroscopy, joint preservation and sports medicine, was founded by Dr. Anant Joshi in 2013. To provide holistic injury management and facilitate back to sports, Sportsmed Mumbai has recently launched Sportsmed Activ. Additionally, Sportsmed Activ offers sports performance enhancement consultancy. Excerpts from the interview are as below:
Q1) What is sports science?
Sports science combines multiple disciplines such as anatomy, biomechanics, biochemistry, biokinetics, physiology (exercise physiology) and psychology (sport psychology) to study human performance from cellular-level to whole body perspectives. The goal of sports scientists is to assess an individual’s performance and to address weak areas (if any).
Q2) The stream of sports science has developed very recently; how’s the demand for sports scientists?
Not really; the ancient Greek physicians planned the training regimens of the Olympic competitors between 776 BC to 393 AD. Yes, the awareness (and demand) has increased in the recent times; especially in India. Individuals at different levels – amateurs, aspirants and athletes – are now relying on sports science to enhance performance. When it comes to careers, undergraduate and postgraduate degrees in Sports Science and Human Physiology are gaining focus. Graduates can undertake training to become an accredited Physiotherapist, Exercise Physiologist, Research Scientist and Sports Medicine consultant.
Q3) How can a physiotherapist help an athlete boost his / her sports performance?
A physio gets started with a screening assessment and then designs an individual performance plan to address any weak areas. A physio can help with the following:
- Sport specific conditioning so that you can achieve your goals
- Home and gym-based training for improving strength and flexibility
- Exercises to improve your efficiency and movement
- Improving your breathing control and designing your core stability programmes
- Biomechanical screening assessment to identify any faulty movement patterns that may be impacting on your performance.
Q4) At Sportsmed Activ, do you consult and train only professional athletes?
At Sportsmed we have catered to over 125 notable celebrities from sports, entertainment and corporate worlds. I have personally trained Mary Kom, Gagan Narang, Saina Nehwal and others in my career. Sportsmed Activ is committed to rehabilitation and performance enhancement. We cater to professional athletes, aspirants and beginners.
Q5) Do you have any tips for our audiences?
I have three tips for everyone – Start off slowly, listen to your body and balance between training and recovery.
That’s all for now from our conversation with Mr. Nikhil Latey of Sportmed Activ. We’ll get more updates for you on sports science and performance enhancement.