1) How important do you think fitness/conditioning is to the modern game? In your opinion, have the fitness requirements changed at all with the transition to PAR scoring?
It is hugely important in my opinion. Firstly to prevent injuries from happening in high-risk areas, but also to recover from injuries that have been sustained. The PAR scoring has brought up the overall intensity and pace of squash rallies, meaning players are a lot quicker and more reactive than before. Therefore players have to be stronger to accommodate for this.
2) How many dedicated fitness/conditioning sessions do you complete in a standard training week?
Both in season and off season, I will do something every day.
3) How long do you spend warming up before an on-court practice session and/or match? Do you pay special attention to any certain areas and if so, why?
Around half an hour warm-up before a session or match. I have the same warm-up basis every time but I spend extra time on areas of tightness, which vary daily, and previously injured areas which are still in need of maintenance/strengthening.
4) What is your all-time hardest off-court training session? How often do you perform this session?
Any repeated high-intensity sprint session! I do these off-season at least once a week.
5) In the aforementioned session, how do you keep up your motivation to not only finish, but perform well? Do you use any particular mental strategies?
I try and drag someone else along with me to try and keep it competitive. But if I am on my own, I try and cover the same distance or time myself to make sure the same quality is replicated every time.
6) Do you use any particular type of training session as a ‘test’ to measure your fitness levels?
Not particularly, I do generic fitness testing every couple of months and that gives you a good indication.
7) Do you incorporate any gym-based weights/resistance sessions into your training programme? If so, what are your main goals from this type of training? (i.e. endurance, power, injury resistance etc.)
Yes, mine are usually focused on speed and power.
8) Are there any particular items of training equipment you incorporate into your sessions that you feel especially benefit you as a squash player? (i.e. bungee cords, agility ladders, weighted vests etc.)
I use hurdles a lot in my plyometric sessions and a flowing board in the gym to help keep a good range of movement throughout my lower body.
9) Do you follow any type of nutrition plan? If not, how have you learned to fuel your body best for your sport’s demands?
I don’t follow anything strictly, but I try and eat as much fresh food as possible. I find eating as soon as possible after sessions helps me recover quicker and stops me from eating readily available foods, which usually are not good for you.
10) Do you use any supplements/vitamins etc as part of your diet/nutrition?
I use electrolytes during sessions and recovery shakes after matches. I also take multivitamins along with joint care tablets to help cover anything my daily meal did not give me.
11) Do you utilize any recovery techniques in between tournament matches? (i.e. specific foods, drink, treatments, ice bath, etc.)
Ice baths after hard matches and see a physio when possible, to iron out any problems. Other than that, just stay well hydrated.
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