Wimbledon & Sports Performance Chefs
We at Pembury Partners are always delighted to be justified in breaking out the strawberries and cream, finding our sun hats (and umbrellas: this is, after all, England) and preparing for that unique racquet-hits-ball sound to reverberate around the leafy London suburb of SW19. Wimbledon is upon us once again.
Whilst we love to watch tennis, Wimbledon fortnight is interesting to us from a business perspective too. Professional tennis players are athletes at the height of their abilities, and you can be certain that to keep them there each has a team of not only agents, managers and so on, but of wellbeing staff. These typically comprise roles including Chief of Staff, PA, Trainer, Wellbeing Manager and Sports Performance Chef.
Our sports sector specialises in finding and placing these very specifically talented individuals to the entourages of athletes across the sporting spectrum, from tennis (of course) to football, golf, NFL and Formula 1.
The pivotal role amongst these is that of the performance chef. One of their main tasks is to educate the athlete/s under their care (and indeed the other support staff) on how dietary strategy can support and enhance performance, recovery and overall health. Through the optimisation of nutrition they’re able to monitor, develop and ultimately improve the athlete’s achievements. Of course, the athlete in question wouldn’t be in the position they are without both natural ability and rigorous training, but their health underpins this and they need to be correctly fuelled and hydrated for their particular sport.
A sports performance chef at this level will need to excel in many areas. These include meticulous menu planning, consistently producing creative, healthy and delicious meals. They’ll have experience with macro-nutrients, and the science behind the fuelling and optimisation of performance on the sports field.
Expertise in sports nutrition differs greatly from knowledge of regular nutrition. Athletes at this level work extremely hard, and the body needs to be run on the correct fuel to enable this – in much the same way as you can’t put ordinary unleaded petrol in a Formula 1 car. Quite simply, there is no supplement, training regimen, workaround or substitute for a properly conceived and perfectly executed diet.