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Optimising Sports Performance

by George Kruis, Saracens Rugby Club.

When Saracens Rugby Club train hard, they rely on Optimum Nutrition’s award-winning range to power their performance. ON is proud of its role as Official Sports Nutrition Supplier to Saracens.

Playing rugby for Saracens is a great privilege. But, we couldn’t do it without the support of all the brilliant backroom staff. They incorporate the latest research and approaches into our training plans to ensure we have everything we need to perform at our peak, every day.

In Part 1 of our Performance Series, we covered the five basic nutrition rules. Get them right and you’ll soon notice the difference. Now you’re ready to take your training to the pro level with two essential supplements that have been proven to optimise performance.


Today, there are a range of caffeine sources available from straight coffee and tea to specially formulated pre-workout drinks. The coffee shops that can be found on every High Street are testament to the widely accepted stimulatory effect of drinking caffeine to help us achieve more in everyday life. Research has proven that caffeine helps you feel more alert and improve your focus.

Caffeine can also offer benefits to how athletes train and they regularly use it as part of their nutritional strategy. In fact, it has been documented that 97% of UK track athletes and cyclists were found to use caffeine with the aim of improving race day performance.

One of the most convenient sources of caffeine for athletes are energy drinks. ON’s Essential Amino Energy delivers caffeine to help increase mental alertness so you can concentrate on your performance goals. It’s been specially formulated with 160 mg of caffeine, including green tea and green coffee extracts. It’s a favourite with the players as each great tasting drink is also packed with 5 g of micronised essential amino acids, including BCAAs. Ideal in the morning when you’re planning to attack the day, pre-workout, or as an afternoon booster.

Creatine Power

Creatine has been subjected to rigorous scientific studies since the early 1990s and is one of the most popular and widely researched sports supplement in the world.

Creatine works by promoting faster regeneration of the energy in the muscle that allows you to complete high intensity short-term bursts of activity. If you increase levels of Creatine in the muscle by taking 3 g a day, you’ll increase your performance in successive bursts of repeated, high intensity training. I find it noticeably helps increase my muscle power during training and this explains why it regularly features in players’ top 3 go-to supplements.

Creatine Caps are specially formulated for rapid disintegration and efficient absorption with your morning, afternoon and evening meals. Alternatively, ON’s Creatine Powderalways mixes easily and unlike other Creatine powders, there’s no gritty taste or texture. For added convenience, we add it to Amino Energy or our protein shakes.