Lemire: One team’s quest to prevent injuries in baseball

From Joe Lemire at Vocativ on May 25, 2016:

Big tech companies like Google and Facebook are famous for having gourmet restaurants masquerading as office cafeterias. The kitchen at the Washington Nationals’ clubhouse is not such a place.

That is no knock on the food’s quality but rather its aim—thanks to the implementation of a far-reaching, analytics-driven new medical program that is fully integrated with strength and conditioning and nutrition. It might not be as tasty, but it’s the type of empirical approach that’d jibe well with those aforementioned tech titans.

“The food in the cafeteria, it’s a lot healthier options,” Nationals first baseman Clint Robinson said. “It’s changed a lot. There’s a lot more fish—any sort, all kinds. Last year was good food, lasagnas and pastas and all that kind of stuff. This year it’s more of healthier options: vegetables, sweet potatoes, that kind of thing. I’m not saying better tasting, but definitely healthier.”

Starting pitcher Tanner Roark said there’s an emphasis on avoiding inflammatory foods, which for him are cherries and strawberries, and that dairy is minimized. Not all of it is culinarily pleasing—“Almond milk, that tastes terrible with cereal,” Roark said—but the overall goal is to keep players healthy and performing at a high level. Meals are fuel.

“There are tons of different things that help your body recover faster,” he said. “Throughout this long season, the grinder of a season, you’ve got to know your body and what to put in it.”

Read the full article here: http://www.vocativ.com/320871/nationals-quest-to-prevent-injuries-analytics/

Originally published: May 25, 2016. Last Updated: May 25, 2016.