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Overtraining Syndrome

A successful training involves a progressive loading with periods of overloading to increase the body’s performance capacity. This overtraining phase is beneficial when followed by adequate rest periods to allow the body to recuperate or supercompensate to achieve an increase in performance. This process is referred
to as functional overreaching and it engages the 3 key recovery pillers (nutrition, hydration, sleep) amongst others.

Failure to involve rest periods or an insufficient recovery leads to maladaptation which in the long run results in overtraining syndrome which has undesirable effects on athletes performance. Common errors that may predispose to this include: lack of progression in training load, a load-rest imbalance or too many competitions,
poor nutrition and psychosocial problems (relationship problems, problems at home or with teammates, the coach or parents).

Overtraining Syndrome is preceeded by a period of non-functional stagnation in performance and the athlete usually has fatigue, constant muscle soreness, poor sleep and high stress levels. If identified early and addressed recovery can be achieved within a few weeks time. If not corrected it leads to a Prolonged state of overtraining syndrome characterized by hormonal, neuroendocrine dysfunction, glycogen depletion and chronic stress and the athlete develops persistent fatigue, mood disturbance, hormonal and metabolic disturbance which ultimately affects their performance due to inability to sustain intense exercises over a prolonged period. Recovery from overtraining syndrome take several months therefore it is important to prevent this.

Periodization refers to a concept of systematic progression or planned manipulation of training variables (load, sets and repetitions) in order to maximize training adaptations and to prevent onset of overtraining syndrome.

There are different models that can be adopted and this is quite handy to apply especially during the return
to play period and these may also be used in rehabilitation of an injured athlete. Periodized training works by varying the load on the neuromuscular system in order to drive adaptation and minimize fatigue. Along with that
it has an added benefit in avoiding training plateus or boredom for the athlete due to its variability.

As the BFA medical committee along with PCMA, Health and safety compliance plus Injury prevention methods we advice teams to engage with their physical trainers to look into football periodization and its different models for adoption in their training routine for maximal athlete performance benefits.

NB: It is important to have the athlete with prolonged fatigue to be evaluated by a sports physician to rule out any other associated medical, nutritional or psychosocial deficiencies that may present this way.



GABORONE, Botswana – Following the request by Senior National Team Coach, Adel Amrouche for leave of absence to attend to a personal matter, the Botswana Football Association (BFA) wishes to inform the public that he has been granted the leave with immediate effect.

Since the COSAFA tournament is the last competitive tournament for the Zebras in the immediate future, the BFA amicably resolved to release Amrouche. The affairs of the National team in preparation for the tournament, set to take place in Nelson Mandela Bay in South Africa from 7-18 July 2021 shall be handed over to Letang Kgengwenyane.

“The BFA understands and supports Mr. Amrouche’s situation and wishes him all the best in his future endeavours,” said BFA Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Goabaone G. Taylor.

Amrouche took over as the Zebras head coach in August 2019 on a two-year deal. After weeks of engaging with the coach over his future, an agreement was reached not to extend his contract.

Adel Amrouche

“Amrouche has been Zebras head coach since August 2019, and his leadership during that time was important to our successful development and international exposure of our players,” added Taylor.

“We appreciate all that Amrouche has done to build a disciplined team. He has always had a thorough understanding of what it takes to be a successful team and has done his best to mentor his players accordingly,” concluded Taylor.

Amrouche has since expressed gratitude towards the BFA for the opportunity.
“I’m eternally grateful for the opportunity to lead the Zebras over the last two years. I leave having picked up quite a number of valuable lessons that will be necessary in the journey ahead. I wish the Zebras success in future competitions,” Amrouche said in statement recently.

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