Breaking with tradition in sport: oranges leap-frogged
By RODNEY STEVENS
THE time-honoured tradition of half-time oranges in sport is under threat ? from lollies such as red frogs.
A customary practice for sporting teams of all ages and levels, the half-time orange break is no longer best practice, according to experts such as the Australian Institute of Sport (AIS).
According the the AIS Department of Sports Nutrition, oranges do not provide sufficient carbohydrate and fluid intake for athletes during half-time breaks and must be supplemented with liquids like water or sports drinks.
Dr Michelle Court, a sports dietician for the AIS, said research had shown that oranges break down quite slowly so they were not the preferred method carbohydrate replenishment for athletes in team sports, as opposed to sports drinks.
"Any glucose-type lollie, such as red frogs, that have a high glycemic index are more beneficial when looking to get fast delivery of carbohydrate to the muscles," she said.
Dr Court said oranges would be a better source of carbohydrate before a game as they break down slowly.
Clarence Valley nutritionist John Seach said being wellnourished before a game was important for athletes participating in any sport.
"At half-time, athletes playing sport need to focus on fluid and carbohydrate replacement," he said.
President of the Grafton Ghosts Junior Rugby League, Terry Day, said the club did-away with oranges a couple of years ago and now encouraged fluid intake at half-time.
"Coaches are told when gaining their accreditation that fluid intake at half-time is vital," he said.
Netballers who play in the Lower Clarence adult competition on Thursday nights told The Daily Examiner that they eat red frogs for a carbohydrate boost before games and at half-time.
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