There are many places around the world to play polo. In August, Santa Maria Polo Club in Sotogrande, Spain and St Tropez Polo Club in France are two of the most popular clubs amongst players both professional and amateur at all levels. Offering high goal tournaments (22 goal and 18 goal respectively), a great location and beautiful climate, these two places are some of the best places in the world to play polo at this time of year.
What happens in both these locations is that many matches are played in just a short space of time – one month.
It is the physical repercussions that interest us at Fitness for Polo. The high temperatures, the intensity of the tournaments and the short recuperation time between matches must all be taken into account. During competition, nutrition and hydration are key. As I have explained in previous articles, eating at the right time and staying constantly hydrated can make the difference between a great match and bad moment.
Seeing as how every player is different with different fitness levels and experience in these types of climates, training for each player must be specific to them. However what is the same across the board is the need to focus on stretching. After each match, practice or stick and ball session it is very beneficial to dedicate between 10 and 15 minutes to stretching and relaxing your muscles.
A simple training session (apt for everyone) done once or twice a week, added to the regular stimulus of the sport itself, should focus on three simple phases: aerobic work + articular mobility + flexibility. In this way we get rid of any residue generated by the muscles when we play polo, avoiding any pains and overloading muscles which could limit your performance.
- In the gym: crosstrainer on low or moderate intensity
- On the field: jogging and skipping sideways
- Trunk rotations
- Standing on one leg and swinging the other in front to and fro
- Lower back and hamstrings: standing with your legs wide apart let your upper body relax forward taking hold of each elbow and relaxing your head
- Quadriceps: maintaining a strong and straight posture take your right heel to you right buttock behind you taking hold of the ankle with your right hand. Lift your left arm up straight over your head. Feel the stretch down your right quadricep before you let go and take a step forward with the right leg, repeating the process on the left. To increase the stretch concentrate on pushing your bent knee backwards while bringing the pelvis forward.
I wish everyone a great season, injury free and playing to the max.
Any doubts or questions or for more information, please don’t hesitate in getting in touch at [email protected]