How we can optimally support our adolescent female runners?
Adolescent girls drop out of organized sport at twice the rate of boys.
This informative article by Elizabeth Carey outlines a few key points to keep in mind in supporting our female athletes.
1. TRACK THE MENSTRUAL CYCLE
Expect irregular cycles early on but if this persists it is important to see you doctor.
2. FUELLING WELL AROUND WORK OUTS: Educating our athletes regarding RED-S (relative energy deficiency in sport) and the essential role of adequate energy availability. Pack a snack in your track bag!!
3. EMPHASIZE STRENGTH, PLYOMETRICS AND CORE WORK OUTS: Multi-directional sports help build strong and functional bone density.
4. GEAR UP MENTALLY AND PHYSICALLY:
Make sure clothing and equipment choices are keeping stride with athletes changing bodies.
Include strategies for coping with training stressors and race day in the education plan. Talk openly about dealing with these common issues to enhance normalization and acceptance.
A shout out Dr Stacy Sims and her practical tips for the female athlete, adolescent to menopausal, in her book ROAR.