For soccer players everywhere, the fall season is a long-awaited treat. Cooler weather and clearer skies can often make games and practices even more enjoyable than they already were! With that being said, there are a few misconceptions many players (new ones especially) have about cool weather play. In today’s blog, we’ll be debunking these myths and providing you with ways you can maximize your gameplay.
Because it’s cold out, you don’t need to drink as much water.
This is one of the biggest misconceptions a newer player might have about the game during fall. Soccer players and athletes of every type often associate heat with the need to drink—the hotter it is outside, the more desirable a tall glass of ice water. But while cool drinks may seem more preferable on hot days, water is completely necessary throughout the fall and winter as well. Without it, you may become dehydrated and not realize it until the effects—like cramping, dry mouth and tiredness—take over.
How can you avoid becoming dehydrated in the fall and winter? Just like you would in the warmer months—drink up plenty of water before and during your gameplay, and you should be fine.
The sun is not as strong.
Another big misconception regarding outdoor time in the fall and winter is that the sun is not and strong, and that you don’t need any (or as much) sunscreen. But this couldn’t be further from the truth! In fact, the sun’s UVA rays are just as strong whether it’s the dead of summer or the middle of November. For this reason, it’s important to protect your skin just as much as you would during the warmer months. There are a few ways to do this. You can wear longer clothes to cover more skin (which you might already be doing in the cool weather anyway), but you should definitely apply sunscreen to any exposed skin—such as your face, neck and arms.
The only way to stay warm is to pile on big winter clothes.
Don’t feel that the only way to stay warm during cold weather months is to wear big, bulky winter clothes! You will often see new or younger players attempting to bundle up by donning puffy winter jackets on the field… but there’s a better (and more comfortable) way to stay warm: the power of layering!
Soccer players and other athletes know that the best way to stay warm during the fall and winter is to wear a few layers of lightweight clothing that you can add to (or take away from) as the temperature changes throughout the day. Because your face, head and chest area are more sensitive to temperature changes, you may want to take measures to cover these spots with ear warmers or a warm hat during warm ups. You can also take advantage of some extra warmth between halves by sticking a pair of hand warmers in your warm up jacket’s pockets.
When it comes to cool weather soccer, the right measures can make your gameplay even better.