Looking to improve your athletic performance can feel like an uphill battle – and a level field of competition can seem impossible to achieve because of athletic doping. Current data shows that up to 39% of athletes in the US are using performance-enhancing drugs to achieve a competitive edge over opponents.
Despite the reasons some athletes choose to take performance-enhancing drugs, athletic doping does not improve the quality of fundamental athletic movement or advance brain function, in a meaningful way, that will lead to improved timing, coordination, or agility. There are methods, through sports and neurological science, to advance athletic performance without turning to harmful and banned substances and today we’ll cover a couple ways that you can improve your athletic performance and why performance-enhancing drugs should be avoided.
Ways To Improve Your Athletic Performance
Know Your Movement
One of the first things to consider when improving your athletic ability shouldn’t be how to artificially enhance what you currently can do, but how to improve what you can do. A functional movement assessment is step one here – this identifies your movement patterns and identifies opportunities for improvement.
In fact, here at Parker Performance Institute, our technology allows us to assess three-dimensional functional movement, ranges of motion, gait, posture, and balance control to better understand why you’re experiencing a barrier to better athletic performance. We use this information to custom-make a plan to help you achieve your goals.
Consider Your Cognitive Performance
Next is to look at what factors outside of your physical movement may be impacting your athletic performance – one example is your cognitive ability.
This relates to things like your reaction time, your ability to think through your game plan and next steps, and the speed that you can perform at. Some of the benefits of cognitive training include:
- reduced stress during sport
- increased memory and retention
- improved mood and outlook
- better focus and concentration
- improved thinking and reaction time
- enhanced ability to track objects
- boosted agility and coordination
Look to a Professional
Ultimately though, when looking to make a large difference in your athletic performance, seeking the help of a trained professional can give you the edge that at home training can’t. Our team here at Parker Performance is trained in neurology and sports therapeutics, and focuses on empowering clients to reach their performance potential. We offer a range of transformative therapeutic programs that integrate cutting-edge physical and neurological-based treatments, designed to help you reach that next step..
Why You Should Avoid Performance-Enhancing Drugs
There are a range of kinds of performance-enhancing drugs, from stimulants to growth hormones and more. Each of them has its own risks, and each of them can cause dangerous side effects. Below is only a sample of the conditions you risk each time a performance enhancing drug is used.
- Serious Cramps
- Potassium Deficiencies
- Low Blood Pressure
- Pain In Joints
- Impaired Vision
- Shrunken Testicles
- Loss of Hair
- An Overgrown Heart
It simply isn’t worth the risk – you can reach that performance peak without endangering yourself and your future potential. Reach out to our team for a free virtual consultation to discuss your goals with our doctors, and learn about how we could help you.