Football fans in Kansas City are rallying behind the Chiefs as the team goes into the playoffs. While it’s exciting for both the fans and the players alike, the extended season presents unique physical challenges for the team.
Rick Burkholder is the head athletic trainer for the Chiefs, and one of the top athletic trainers in the National Football league. In the video, he explains that even though it’s exciting for the team to achieve its goals by being in the playoffs, it puts extra physical and mental demands on the players to keep performing at the highest possible level. He says just as with student athletes, the most important factors in an extended season are nutrition and recovery. He also says hydration is more important now than at any other season of the year, and he says the players’ stress levels tend to go up in the playoffs, and they have to keep from using comfort food to help.
Dr. Lisa Vopat treats student athletes at the Sports Medicine and Performance Center at The University of Kansas Hospital. She says students especially need rest days and at least eight hours of sleep daily to help get through postseason play as most injuries come from fatigue. She says it’s extremely important for students to spend extra time warming up and stretching as their bodies tend to wear down at the end of a regular season of competition.
The video also contains three different winter high schools sports…basketball, wrestling and swimming.