Anyone who has soldiered through 18 holes of golf knows that it can be much harder than it looks. Golf is a sport that requires steadfast endurance and intense focus, two things that can be very difficult to maintain for extended periods of time. With lots of time and practice, these traits can be honed to boost your golf game and lower your scores, but in the short term, there are few options. One thing that works? Amino acid supplements, namely those containing BCAAs. To learn more about how these potent products can improve your mental game in golf and give you greater endurance over 18 holes, keep reading as the people at aminoVITAL® provide some answers.
Getting to Know the BCAAs
Before we explain how BCAAs can help boost your mental game in golf, here’s a brief rundown of what these compounds are and what they do in the body. There are 20 different amino acids our bodies need to function; of these, 11 can be made internally, while the other nine – the “essential” amino acids” – must come from foods, supplements, and other outside sources. The term “BCAA” refers to a class of essential amino acids with a noted ability to improve athletic performance, the “branched-chain” amino acids. In all, there are three amino acids classified as BCAAs – leucine, isoleucine, and valine – each of which offers its own set of benefits.
The first of these, leucine, is likely the most well-known of the BCAAs; certainly, it gets the most attention from researchers. That’s because this amino acid is what tells your body to start making new muscle tissue via a process called muscle protein synthesis. Those who consume leucine during and after exercise have been shown to have greater gains and less muscle damage, thanks in part to leucine’s metabolites1 (the compounds created when the body processes a substance). One metabolite in particular, beta-hydroxy-beta-methylbutyrate (HMB), has been shown to help protect muscles from damage.
The second BCAA, isoleucine, is more about endurance than strength. This amino acid promotes the movement of fuel (in the form of glucose) to the muscles and improves those cells’ ability to use it, giving users lasting energy in the midst of even the longest golf match. Isoleucine may also help speed up the recovery process after exercise.
The third and final BCAA, valine, works to protect muscles from degradation brought on by exercise. When you use your muscles for a long time, the strain can cause tiny tears in the tissues, and your muscles can be further broken down by the body itself as it searches for additional sources of energy. Valine helps limit this damage, preserving muscle mass and reducing recovery requirements after even the longest round of golf.
In addition, BCAA supplements from aminoVITAL® include some additional ingredients aimed at supporting your performance on the course. Our Action supplement, for instance, also contains electrolytes to balance hydration and a small dose of carbs to replenish the stores of glycogen in the muscles. This particular product has been popular with golfers for its ability to improve focus over 18 holes; you can learn more about this process below.
How BCAAs Improve Your Mental Game in Golf
It’s a well-established fact that exercising for extended periods, even at a low level of intensity, is bound to make a person feel fatigued and unfocused. There are a number of reasons for this, from the depletion of energy stores to the wear and tear that builds in the muscles, but one of the primary causes of this kind of fatigue is serotonin, a neurotransmitter linked to mood, energy, appetite, and sleep that’s created from the amino acid tryptophan.
Under normal circumstances – meaning when your body is rested – tryptophan enters the brain across the blood-brain barrier (BBB) at a certain rate. There is a limited number of pathways through this barrier, however, and tryptophan must compete with the BCAAs in your blood for access to these pathways. This competition acts indirectly to regulate serotonin levels by limiting the uptake of tryptophan into the brain.
However, when you exercise, your muscles begin to absorb BCAAs from your blood to support their functions, which reduces competition for tryptophan at the BBB. This allows tryptophan to enter the brain in greater amounts, which in turn leads to a buildup of serotonin and feelings of fatigue that emanate from the central nervous system.
By supplementing with a BCAA supplement like those from aminoVITAL®, you can restore the balance of amino acids in your bloodstream, effectively preventing an increase in serotonin and fighting fatigue before it begins. For golfers, this means greater focus and endurance through the back nine and beyond.
Try an Amino Acid Supplement to Improve Your Golf Game Today
They may be relatively new to the fitness supplement market, but amino acid-based supplements have long been popular for their ability to improve your mental game in golf. Not only do they help fight fatigue, improve energy levels, and support muscle growth and repair, but amino acid supplements also tend to be much leaner than most protein-based options; for example, the Action amino acid supplement from aminoVITAL® has only 15 calories and no sugar, though it does offer 2400 mg of amino acids and 290 mg of electrolytes. Add a BCAA mix to your bottle of water the next time you’re on the course and see the difference for yourself. Learn more by visiting aminoVITAL® online or calling (888) 264-6673 today.