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Hockey Girl Nutrition 101
As a female hockey player, you should know that being in top shape is one of the most important requirements to play the sport, especially at a professional level. It requires a lot of energy to skate across the rink and back in just a few minutes. As you’ve probably noticed, players in the NWHL and PWHPA stay in top shape, in order to be able to give their best in each shift.
According to the Sports Science Institute; active females and competitive female athletes have unique energy and nutrition issues compared to their male counterparts.
They claim that the most common nutrition issues center around meeting the energy demands of sport, activities of daily living, and reproduction, and selecting appropriate foods to get the nutrients required to support high levels of physical activity, building and repair of bone and muscle, and overall health.
Coach Jess Demers on Today’s Dietitian states that the amount of water and electrolytes a player loses will rely on their age, metabolism and degree of conditioning. In order to avoid cramping, unnecessary injury, and to preserve muscle, proper hydration is key.
It is therefore very important to drink plenty of the proper liquids, before, during and after practice, as well as at home.
According to the New York Islander’s strength and conditioning coach, hockey players who play a game for longer shifts should consume a couple of carbohydrate beverages during the game and snack a little in between games. Even only a few bites of an energy bar can help maintain blood sugar levels and prevent a third-period crash.
He also claims that simple carbohydrates are not necessarily bad for an athlete and are a great post-game meal because they are absorbed quickly.
Therefore, Demmers recommends slow-burning complex carbohydrates (such as oatmeal, brown rice, corn, peas, root vegetables, beans, lentils, yams, and pasta) before games, and fast-burning simple carbohydrates (such as biscuits, raisins, honey, sports beverages, and fruit juices) after games.
Recommended Foods For Training
according to Today’s Dietitian
(quickly absorbed; best used in moderation during and after practice/game)
- Fruit juices
- Baked potatoes
- White flour breads
- Ripe bananas
- White rice
- Mashed potatoes
- Refined carbohydrate foods
- Sports drinks
- Quick oats
- Dried fruit
(moderately absorbed; best used prior to events and for weight management)
- Bran cereals
- Pasta (moderately cooked)
- Whole grain breads
(slowly absorbed; best for maintaining blood sugar and weight management)
- Most vegetables
- Leafy green vegetables
- Slow-cooked oatmeal
(essential foods for performance and good health)
- Raw/mixed nuts
- Fresh berries
- Omega-3 eggs
- Leafy green vegetables
- Nut butter
- Green tea
- Extra-virgin olive oil
Gatorade Sports Science Institute(n.d). The female athlete: Energy and nutrition issues. Retrieved June 21 2020, from,
David, Yeager( 2011, March). Ice Hockey Nutrition and Training — How Players Meet Their Goals in the Pros[Blog post]. Retrieved from