HealthDoes having sexual relations decrease sports performance? | Get informed

    Does having sexual relations decrease sports performance? | Get informed

    A young couple runs through the field.
    A young couple runs through the field.nd3000 (Getty Images/iStockphoto)

    At the beginning of the summer, a European Sex Championship was announced to be held in Sweden, although it was ultimately cancelled. This event raised expectations, both for the activity to be carried out and for its comparison with sport, something that has once again highlighted the complicated relationships that have always existed between having sexual relations and sporting performance. Sexual activity could be considered as another physical activity, since its exercise can entail the expenditure of around 100 calories or its equivalent in about 4-6 METs (metabolic units that take as a unit the energy consumption of a subject at rest, so 6 MET is equivalent to six times the energy consumption than if you were at rest). In addition, it implies a heart rate between 90 and 130 beats per minute, with peaks of up to 170 beats per minute. Likewise, it is worth remembering that exercise improves appetite and sexual function, so sexual activity can be considered a form of physical activity that benefits health and well-being, so we are faced with a complex relationship between exercise and activity. sexual when analyzing sports performance.

    Muhammad Ali, the well-known boxer, maintained sexual abstinence for six weeks before the fight so that it would not cause a loss of energy. In the famous movie Rocky We were introduced to a trainer who believed that legs became weak after having sex. And, on the other hand, there are countless athletes who have openly declared that they have never had problems for having sexual relations before competitions, as is the case of soccer player Ronaldinho. Even a sports shoe brand (Brooks Running), after conducting a survey among male and female runners, reported that they perceived that they competed better after having had relationships.

    The affair comes from afar. In ancient Greece and Rome it was already considered that sexual abstinence allowed the body not to lose testosterone through ejaculation, which would maintain aggressiveness and muscular strength. This reasoning was related to the Sperm Conservation Theory, which raised the danger of losing semen secretion, which could be mentally and physically counterproductive. Traditionally, abstinence has been associated with greater aggressiveness when competing, and it was not okay to lose energy before the competition… However, its positive side could be seen, since it reduces anxiety levels and has a relaxing effect. , which could favor performance.

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    Never two hours before

    Therefore, we move in the world of myths and opinions. What does science tell us about it? Although it could be stated that scientific evidence suggests that there is a physiological alteration that reduces competitive ability due to having had sexual relations, research is not conclusive regarding what physiological, metabolic or psychological parameters could be affected (positively or negatively) when carrying out activities. strenuous after having sexual relations.

    Scientific studies show that sexual activity before competition is not directly related to strength or aerobic endurance performance. A very important aspect to highlight is the time interval between the sexual act and the moment of competing: it can be negative if it is less than 2 hours. Some studies show anecdotally that if 10 hours before competition are respected and individual routines are not altered, it could have a positive effect. Likewise, if sexual activity is combined with the intake of alcohol or tobacco, negative effects could occur. Therefore, what would affect sports performance is not so much sexual relations as the loss of hours of sleep and the worsening of its quality.

    In the psychological aspect, the variables related to aggressiveness have been analyzed, such as motivation, alertness or attitude towards competition. The well-known inverted U hypothesis suggests that an adequate level of alertness/anxiety is needed to perform, and having sex could facilitate that state of availability. However, it should be noted that, for other athletes not so interested in sex, adequate and restful sleep is more beneficial for competition.

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    Pele preferred to rest

    Therefore, without a doubt, we are dealing with an issue more related to individual preferences and routines than to whether or not to have sexual relations before competing. As the famous footballer Pele indicated, some players need to have sex to relax, and others are not affected, it is a personal decision. As we have already indicated, the problem lies not in having relationships, but in the rest before the game or competition, a fact that is not the same for all players. Pele preferred to rest.

    It should be noted that athletes are very active, young people, and that they generally have a greater sexual appetite than the non-athletic population, an aspect that can produce a greater number of sexual relations, as occurred in the Olympic Village in the last editions of the Olympic Games. Since the Barcelona 1992 Games, the organizers have given condoms to all delegations: in Sydney 2000, 70,000 condoms were given, in Beijing 2008, 100,000 were given, and in London 2012, about 150,000. Another striking example is that of the 2014 World Cup in Brazil, where all the coaches of the national teams that participated in the quarterfinals of the tournament answered affirmatively to the question of whether they allowed their players to have sexual relations the day before the match. game. Again, the key is to be able to have between 10 and 12 hours of rest before competing so as not to have a negative impact on performance in competition.

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    Scientific studies point out that having sexual relations with a stable partner does not represent a change in routine, while if it is sporadic, in unusual contexts outside the athlete’s routines, it could have a negative effect. Let us remember Pele’s words in reference to fellow soccer players who went out to the club and drank the day before the competition in order to have sporadic relationships, altering their routine and affecting their performance in the game. “Sex itself is not a problem, but warming up is. The only problem for the players is that first they have to meet the girl, then go to the club, have a drink; then they have sex and finally they have to train or play the next day,” he explained.

    GET FOUND It is the EL PAIS SALUD space where we will talk about those aspects related to physical activity, sports and physical and mental health. Physical activity and sport are part of the culture of all civilizations and play a fundamental role in the health of society at all levels, both physical and mental, at all ages, from childhood to old age, both in men as well as women. The Physical Activity and Sports Sciences have attempted to advance scientific knowledge about the importance of movement and physical exercise on the body, as well as the processes that explain why certain adaptations, modifications or changes occur to different conditions. levels (physiological, anatomical, motor, emotional or cognitive). For all these reasons, this space seeks to find scientific explanations that substantiate and justify the beneficial reasons for physical activity and sport. Likewise, it will try to discuss and refute certain myths or false beliefs that exist in society on specific topics of physical exercise and health.

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    Source: EL PAIS

    This post is posted by Awutar staff members. Awutar is a global multimedia website. Our Email: [email protected]


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