As we wrap up the holidays and get back into competition season, many athletes are struggling to get back into the swing of things. Whether it’s just a week, or it’s a whole summer, taking time off from an athletic activity can make it challenging to hop right back in when it’s time to get back to it. Here are the top five ways to stay in shape during your off-season, or even just your holiday break.

5. Eat Nutrient-Rich Foods

One of the easiest ways to care for your body during a break or off-season is to eat right. That doesn’t mean you need to skip the sweets, but make sure you’re eating all your veggies and protein you need to support your muscles. Athletes’ bodies demand plenty of nutrients to stay strong, so make sure you’re getting all the ones you need to maintain your strength. It may be a break, but the right nutrition will make getting back into things much easier than they would be otherwise.

4. Cardio

Our cardiovascular health determines much of our stamina when we’re on the cheer floor. We know you won’t be throwing any full outs while on your break, but you should engage in activities that push your body and raise your heart rate just as much! We recommend dancing, running, and tumbling to keep your body moving. If the gym is closed for the break, definitely dance it out at home and do a few mark-throughs of your routine to get your blood pumping.

3. Do Drills

Keep your technique and your skills by practicing your drills at home. While you could probably do your normal tumbling in your sleep, going through the drills and stretches will make your first day back fun instead of filled with soreness and disappointment. Keep your body on top of your skills by taking some drill time every day or two.

2. Attend Extra Tumbling Events

You might not have cheer practice during the off-season, but we can promise there will be tumbling classes. These classes keep your muscles strong, your technique tight, and your stamina levels high. Getting back into the competition season will be a breeze. Plus, you might land some new skills along the way!

1. Condition

It may not sound like much fun, but conditioning at home can help any all-star cheerleader keep their strength and stamina high over a break. Hold planks, do sprints, perform your leg lifts while watching a movie — no matter what your preferred conditioning moves are, adhering to a strict schedule will ensure you’re prepared for the conditioning your coach gives you when you get back to the gym.

The staff at MGA Cheer Extreme wants to wish you and your family a happy break! Whether we are enjoying our winter break or waving farewell at the end of the season, we encourage you to stay in shape to get ready for your return. Enjoy your time off. We sure will! We’ll see you soon.