Recovery for Performance in Sport

Teacher Yann Le Meur
Dates 16-17 November 2019
Max participants 50
Location Fisiopoint - via del Casaletto, 297 - Rome, Italy
Certificate / Credits Yes / Yes (16 ECM)
Type of course Theoretical & Practical
Course features
Research & Evidence Based
Theoretical foundation
Hands-on/practical sessions
2 days of high quality learning content
Course in English with translation in Italian
Course open to: health professionals, athletic trainers and medicine/PT/AT students
PhD & Sport scientist
Yann Le Meur is a French sport scientist. At the same time, he is currently editorial member of different scientific journals. The biggest part of his work is not dedicated to research but mainly to...
Course program
  • 09:30AM-11:00AM

    Analyse the situation – What is the aetiology of performance decline?
    The 4R of Recovery: Repair, Rehydrate, Restore, Refresh

    Practical case-study: Understanding the causes of fatigue associated with a soccer match (1-, 2-, 3-games per week scenario)

  • 11:00AM-11:30AM


  • 11:30AM-1:00PM

    Repair. Strategies to promote muscle regeneration and to reduce muscle soreness (1)

  • 1:00PM-2:00PM

    Lunch break

  • 2:00PM-4:00PM

    Repair. Strategies to promote muscle regeneration and to reduce muscle soreness (2)

    Practical case-study: Managing muscle recovery for a rugby 7s player during a tournament involving 6 games in 48h

  • 4:00PM-4:30PM


  • 4:30PM-6:00PM

    Restore & Rehydrate. Managing nutrition to speed-up glycogen replenishment & Tips to optimize post-exercise rehydration

    Practical case-study: Managing nutritional recovery strategies for a tennis player during a tournament with 3 sets match each day

  • 08:30AM-10:30AM

    Refresh. Recovery is not only about physiology: Strategies to promote mental recovery. Sleep & beliefs.

    Practical case-studies:

    • How to manage sleep 1) during intensified training periods, 2) prior to competition and 3) after a late-evening competition
    • Managing sleep to facilitate clock resynchronization during long-haul travels involving jetlag
    • Examples of individualized training modalities taking into account the athletes beliefs and preferences.

  • 10:30AM-11:00AM


  • 11:00AM-12:30AM

    Recovery: Is it all about post-exercise strategies? The importance of physical fitness on the recovery kinetic

  • 12:30AM-1:30PM

    Lunch break

  • 1:30PM-3:30PM

    Recovery: Too much of a good thing? When recovery strategies may interfere with the training-induced adaptations

    Practical case-study: Optimizing muscle recovery during a pre-season training camp (applied examples in endurance sports & team sports): building strong athletes while limiting the risk of training maladaptations during intensified training periods

  • 3:30PM-4:00PM


  • 4:00PM-5:30PM

    A chronic approach of recovery: Reducing the risk of training maladaptations (overreaching & overtraining syndrome)

    Practical examples: Implementing a monitoring training system: strategies to monitor internal & external training loads and well-being to adjust the recovery strategies on a daily basis. Illustrations in tennis & team sports


In today's competitive sport environment, discovering effective methods of facilitating optimal athletic performance is paramount to success. The recovery period is essential in maintaining athletes physical and psychological well-being and crucial in the pursuit of intense physical training and satisfying performances. This course will present techniques and modalities currently used to enhance athletes recovery, optimize training time, and avoid overreaching & overtraining. The participants will find proven strategies for enhancing the recovery process and learn the importance of structuring an individualized and evidenced based recovery plan for improving performance. Appealing to a broad audience, this course will provide a scientific base of information as well as specific elements that allow for practical application in the real world on the basis of case-studies and practical examples with well-trained and elite athletes. These case studies will complement the scientific explanations by bringing additional context to the discussion of safe recovery modalities and how to apply those concepts to specific sports.

Day 1

Analyze the situation - What is the aetiology of performance decline?

When working with athletes, it is crucial to understand whether insufficient recovery is causing a reduction in the capacity to train or compete. With sufficient time, in most cases, the body will recover without the need for additional interventions. Physiological stress induced by intense exercise, symptomatically manifests post-exercise as a decrease in neuromuscular function, increased muscle soreness, stiffness, lack of energy and mental fatigue. Athletes completing exercise whilst experiencing these symptoms will likely perform below their potential and therefore the root causes should be reviewed because this might increase the risk of injury. On identification that inadequate recovery is causing a reduction in training or competition performance, it is essential to ascertain the aetiology of the performance decline. Many athletes will be subject to a milieu of stressors, therefore a forensic understanding of the physiological and psychological challenges is required. These will be based upon: the exercise modality, frequency, duration and intensity; familiarization to the exercise; environment; and in some cases the added complexity of collision or sub-clinical trauma. If the aforementioned challenges are identified as the potential cause for inadequate recovery, strategies can be selected to minimize the deleterious effects on performance. Recovery selection should be influenced by: 1) the 'recovery window' determined by the requirement to next train or compete; and 2) identification of the causes that have the greatest negative effects on performance and their recovery time-course.

This introduction part will describe different case-studies involving varied contexts (i.e. intensified training periods, competition) in both individual and team sports to identify how it is possible to target the origins of fatigue for an appropriate selection of recovery strategies.

The 4R of Recovery: Repair, Rehydrate, Restore, Refresh

The principles of post-workout recovery can be quite simple and easily be accounted. They should be to: provide energy to replace muscle glycogen stores, help maximize the repair of muscle damage, and sufficiently replenish any fluids & electrolytes lost during training and promote mental recovery.

If that sounds like a mouthful, consider learning the four "R's" of recovery: Refuel, Rebuild, Rehydrate & Refresh. These 4 principles are the cornerstones of post-workout & recovery. They are also essential in maximizing the training effect. This training effect can have different applications depending on the type, intensity & duration of the activity. In this course, we will take a look at an overview of the 4 R's of recovery and then break down a few practical examples on how to implement them in real-life scenarios.

Repair. Strategies to promote muscle regeneration and to reduce muscle soreness

Training and athletic competition frequently result in exercise-induced muscle damage. The degree of muscle damage depends on several factors including exercise type, duration, intensity and habituation to the exercise. Exercise with an eccentric component results in a greater magnitude of negative symptoms associated with exercise-induced muscle damage. During an eccentric contraction, the muscle lengthens while under tension, resulting in mechanical damage to the sarcomeres; this mechanical damage leads to an inflammatory response, proposed to exacerbate the degree of damage. Exercise-induced muscle damage is characterized by a number of symptoms including temporary reductions in muscle strength, decreased rate of force development, reduced range of motion, swelling, increased feelings of soreness and the appearance of intracellular proteins in the blood. These symptoms can last for a number of days and may affect the capacity to train at the desired intensity in subsequent training sessions, thus having an impact on long-term training programs and competition performance; as a result, methods to reduce the negative symptoms associated with exercise-induced muscle damage are widely sought.
A number of modalities have been investigated in the search for a treatment that may reduce the effects of exercise-induced muscle damage and/or accelerate recovery. Here, we will consider and prioritize the role of nutrition, massage, antioxidant & anti-inflammatory supplementation, cold water immersion and compression garments in this area. To make the implementation realistic in practical settings, we will build different post-exercise recovery circuits aiming at promoting muscle recovery in different sports.

Restore. Managing nutrition to speed-up glycogen replenishment

While sports nutrition guidelines have evolved during the past decade to incorporate sport-specific and periodized manipulation of carbohydrate availability, athletes attempt to maximize muscle glycogen synthesis between important workouts or competitive events so that fuel stores closely match the demands of the prescribed exercise. Therefore, it is important to understand the factors that enhance or impair this process. In the early post-exercise period (0-4h), glycogen depletion provides a strong drive for its own resynthesis, with the provision of carbohydrates optimizing this process. During the later phase of recovery (4-24 h), carbohydrates intake should meet the anticipated fuel needs of the training/competition, with the type, form, and pattern of intake being less important than total intake. To illustrate this aspect of post-exercise recovery, we will consider how to build snacks and lunches during intensified training periods and competitions.

Rehydrate: Tips to optimize post-exercise rehydration

Hypohydration, or a body water deficit, is a common occurrence in athletes and recreational exercisers following the completion of an exercise session. For those who will undertake a further exercise session that day, it is important to replace water losses to avoid beginning the next exercise session hypohydrated and the potential detrimental effects on performance that this may lead to. During this part of the course, we will provide an overview of the research related to factors that may affect post-exercise rehydration. Research in this area has focused on the volume of fluid to be ingested, the rate of fluid ingestion, and fluid composition. Volume replacement during recovery should exceed that lost during exercise to allow for ongoing water loss; however, ingestion of large volumes of plain water results in a prompt diuresis, effectively preventing longer-term maintenance of water balance. Addition of sodium to a rehydration solution is beneficial for maintenance of fluid balance due to its effect on extracellular fluid osmolality and volume. The addition of macronutrients such as carbohydrate and protein can promote maintenance of hydration by influencing absorption and distribution of ingested water, which in turn effects extracellular fluid osmolality and volume. Alcohol is commonly consumed in the post-exercise period and may influence post-exercise rehydration, as will the co-ingestion of food.

Here we will identify which tips may help athletes to rehydrate themselves during both training periods and competition.

Day 2

Refresh. Recovery is not only about physiology: Strategies to promote mental recovery

Sleep. Athletes experience various situations and conditions that can interfere with their sleep (late-evening matches, jetlag, match-outcome related mood, excitement and arousal due to competition, etc.), which is crucial for optimal psychological and physiological recovery as well as subsequent performance. During this part of the course, we will summarize and evaluate sleep intervention studies targeting subsequent performance and recovery in competitive athletes. Based on the findings, a secondary aim will be to outline some possible sleep interventions - especially behavioral strategies - for athletes, including recommendations for content, mode of delivery and evaluation.

Beliefs. An important consideration in the application of interventions is athlete belief. This is particularly pertinent given that a growing body of evidence indicates that recovery is related to individual preference and perceptions of the intervention. Practitioners must recognize and manage the influence of the belief and placebo effects in the successful application of recovery strategies. Given the need to achieve coach and athlete buy-in to any intervention, there is an obvious challenge to balance an evidence-based approach with the beliefs and expectations of coaches and athletes. In cases where an athlete believes in a particular recovery strategy despite a lack of supporting scientific evidence, the demand on resource (financial, time, effort), the cost (i.e. what is sacrificed by engaging in a particular strategy) and critically, the potential for harm or a negative performance effect must be evaluated. In light of the evidence in this nascent field, many practitioners currently implement recovery strategies during tournament situations or after specific training sessions when performance in the subsequent round of competition or training session is paramount.
Recovery: Is it all about post-exercise strategies? The importance of physical fitness on the recovery kinetic

Recent studies examined the influence of physical qualities on markers of fatigue and muscle damage following training sessions and competitions. Their results demonstrate that post-match fatigue is usually lower in players with well-developed high-intensity running ability, and lower body strength, despite these players having greater internal and external workloads. This finding demonstrate that thinking recovery is not restricted to post-exercise interventions. What is implemented before the competition is of great importance to optimize the post-exercise recovery process during competitions.

Recovery: Too much of a good thing? When recovery strategies may interfere with the training-induced adaptations

The chronic use of recovery strategies on long-term adaptation to training is of growing interest. Based on the premise that recovery strategies reduce the exercise-induced stress, they might also reduce the stimulus for adaptation. This presents a challenging dichotomy when developing a regimen to support long-term athlete development. Taking cold water immersion as an example; there is evidence that adaptation is blunted to both resistance and endurance training and that anabolic signalling, satellite cell proliferation and strength gains are reduced. However, molecular responses indicative of mitochondrial biogenesis, have been associated with cold application together with modest improvements in endurance performance. These equivocal findings are also seen in chronic high dose vitamin supplementation, showing a blunted increase in mitochondrial protein expression, but with no concomitant effect on physiological capacity or performance. Similarly, the evidence-base to support the popular use of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs to reduce indices of muscle damage is equivocal; so too the effects of long-term administration on adaptation to training.

This section of the course will consider how it is possible to differentiate the recovery strategies during a full season by periodizing them on the basis of illustrations taken in sports involving different competition schedule profiles.

A chronic approach of recovery: Reducing the risk of training maladaptations (overreaching & overtraining syndrome) by optimizing the athlete's monitoring

We all know that eliminating non-desirable behaviors can be difficult, even when there is a clear understanding that poor habits are detrimental. Athletes often know the benefits of diet, exercise, and drinking less alcohol, yet short-term bursts of enthusiasm are more common than long-term change. Academics in behavior change consistently report that efforts to change health behaviors, such as the ones mentioned, have had limited success.

Experienced coaches and sport scientists often represent the "front line" when it comes to promoting changes in an athlete's behavior and positive habits. Unfortunately, change is often difficult; some athletes will resist change as the effort required to change poor behaviors may not always seem to be worth it.

The last part of the course will illustrate the importance of workload and well-being monitoring to make the athlete active in the management of recovery strategies. Practical examples will be given in individual and team sports to illustrate how it is possible to implement such kind of strategies in a daily setting to reduce the risk of training maladaptations and maximize training adaptations and performance.

Registration fee

  • Registration fee (early booking) € 385,00 + VAT 22% - until September 30th 2019
  • Registration fee € 435,00 + VAT 22% - from October 1st 2019
  • -10% for members of our partners

* The aforementioned promo cannot be combined with the other ongoing discounts such as:
"10% discount fee for members of PARTNERS’ organizations”