Top 5 Nutrition Tips That Get Great Results

Fitness with Farrington

By: Michael Farrington
GM of High Altitude Tennis Academy
Grand Slam Level Director of Fitness and Injury Prevention

Top 5 Nutrition Tips for Great Results (Short Term and Long Term)

Earlier this month, I was asked to speak on a Parenting Aces’ Radio Show about the importance of nutrition for Junior tennis players and some recommendations on how they can improve the most. This was a great opportunity to reach out to a lot of junior tennis parents around the world and I was honored to be able to offer my help to one of the most understood areas of today’s tennis game. Below are my top recommendations for understanding your nutrition and taking accountability for your habits.

You can find interview in its entirety here:

Educate Yourself and Plan Ahead:

There is a lot of grey area out there in the nutrition world because there is never one exact amount of calories, vitamins or minerals you should ingest on a day-to-day basis. At HAT, we recommend the students have 19-35% of their daily calories come from protein, 30-45% from carbohydrates and the rest from fat sources.

Additionally, it is important to educate yourself on supplements. Far too often, trainers recommend supplements with no regard for what is actually in them. The FDA does not regulate supplements, so the manufacturer can put whatever they want into the supplements, and sometimes they put in steroids or other anabolic agents to produce results. The reason why these supplements are sometimes recommended is because the trainer can be an “affiliate” of that company (or multiple companies) and earn commission on each product sold.

Nutrient / Hydration Timing Before, During and After Matches

For the sake of brevity for this article, specific amounts, recommendations and best practices, please email if you would like to review my article on Hydration.

Do Not Forget The Importance Of Sodium Intake

For more specific details on the importance of sodium intake, how to avoid cramps and what sodium intake amounts you should ingest, please read through my article on Cramps In Tennis.

Lean Protein, Fruits and Vegetables Should Be The Core of Your Nutrition Program

Remember when your mother always hassled you to eat your vegetables? She was right! If you can help your child make it a priority to eat fruits, vegetables and lean protein with every meal, they will get all of the nutrients, vitamins and marco-nutrients they need on a daily basis. I am not saying to never eat bread, pasta, or rice (I LOVE pasta), but just know that grains contain very few vitamins and minerals compared to fruits and vegetables.

Prioritize Your Nutrition Now To Build The Habits of a Healthy Lifestyle

Most importantly, remember that if you are a parent, your kids are learning everything from you! If you provide poor choices now, your child is building poor habits for their long-term nutrition and health. I have my parents to thank for my (better than most) nutrition. I was never allowed to have sugary cereal, cookies or candy in the house (aside from Halloween), so now I rarely consume any of those items in my adult life. I feel no urge to consume them, nor do I like the taste when I do. Remember, a lifetime of great nutrition and health is much more important than tennis!

I didn’t just wake up one day thinking, Wow, I want to be a tennis player,It all came gradually

Karen reached out to HAT, hoping for an opportunity to train and travel on the WTA circuit with the expert coaching team.  You see Karen does not come from a family of professional athletes or parents who are well to do.  They are an every day family, with an extraordinary daughter; fighting her way to the top of the game, often facing what seem to be insurmountable obstacles.

Karen Barritza, WTA Player from Denmark

Traveling the world every week playing tournaments in not so glamorous locations, often alone, with enormous pressures from home and from self, can be overwhelming.  Breaking through as a professional tennis player is extremely difficult.  It certainly demands skill, talent and dedication; however, it also requires a tremendous amount of emotional and financial support.

Becoming a top-ranked tennis player does not happen automatically.  “I didn’t just wake up one day thinking, ‘Wow, I want to be a tennis player!’ says Karen, “It all came gradually.  I started playing when I was six on a vacation in Romania, and got really into it and practiced a lot. When I came home (to Denmark), I was playing quite well, started winning a lot and kept practicing – people and coaches started noticing me.

Karen credits her involvement with HAT for much of her success both on and off the court.  “Those involved with HAT are ambitious and talented.  The organization provides a nurturing environment so that you can take your tennis to the next level.  I have learned a lot and have had a lot of experiences that I feel I can take with me ‘till later in life.”  Karen’s goal is to be in the Top 100 WTA singles and to play Grand Slam events.