All of us eat gum. This small ritual has ingrained itself into our daily routine and is something we perform on a regular basis. But what advantages does this have? What else explains why football players chew gum?
Gum chewing has many positive health effects. It benefits your jaw and mouth, aids in calorie burning, and even lessens heartburn. According to one study, chewing gum can help people deal with depression. How can chewing gum benefit football players? And why do they do it? You might notice some football players chewing gum if you watch a few football games.
“Chewing Gum can enhance alertness & sustained attention.”NCBI USA
Football and some other sports have started to heavily feature this. What drives this behavior, and does it actually benefit football players in any way?
Does Chewing Gum Enable Footballers to Think Faster?
Can chewing gum help you have a more active brain? Is this the rationale for footballers’ gum chewing? According to research, chewing gum can significantly increase brain function. On British Psychological Society memory tests, those who chewed gum performed 40% better. They even described the improvement in memory as “very dramatic.”
increases mental activity:
Because the nerves are constantly transmitting impulses and messages to the brain, the movement of the jaw while chewing gum increases mental activity. This keeps the brain functioning constantly and can assist football players in staying alert and concentrated during the game.
It sharpens their reflexes and attentiveness. Football players can reduce their reaction time throughout the play in this method. Every advantage during a competitive encounter has the potential to affect the outcome. Shorter reaction times will increase the game’s competitive advantage in light of this.
cognitive benefits of chewing gum:
Chewing gum improves cognitive abilities in football players. Individuals will make better decisions because chewing gum improves their ability to concentrate, think faster, and think clearly.
They can evaluate every aspect of the game and make better decisions on the field. One thing to remember is that the benefits end when you spit out your gum. There is no benefit rollover after that.
Does Chewing Gum Help Footballers Keep their Mouth Healthy?
Football players can maintain their mouth’s moisture and hydration by chewing gum. As it increases saliva, it has a direct connection to maintaining oral health. This is a typical method of getting rid of food scraps after eating.
Dehydration and dry mouth may be caused by running and strenuous exercise. Football players can avoid experiencing a dry mouth while playing by chewing gum to maintain an optimal level of oral moisture.
Does Chewing Gum Lower Footballers’ Stress Level?
Important games can be quite a stressful experience for football players. All the hard work and time invested before that day is now put to the test. It is natural to feel anxious and boosted with energy. If you are a little nervous, wouldn’t it be great if you could calm down and use that energy to increase your performance?
Chewing gum is one way you can achieve this and this is the reason why footballers are increasingly doing so. This is because the level of stress is reduced. If you do not chew gum, you feel more stressed and have a higher level of anxiety. Why is that the case?
How can this help footballers during the game?
The main reason why this is possible is that moving your jaw while in chewing motion increases the blood flow to the brain. This increased blood flow helps to increase oxygen in the brain and, in turn, decreases the stress level. This also helps the flow of happy chemicals in the brain, which additionally calms you down.
Studies have shown that footballers who chew gum have reduced cortisol levels. Cortisol is a stress hormone, and reducing the level of cortisol keeps you calmer and less anxious. That way, you are in a position to make decisions rationally and without pressure. This has also led to increased performance on the field.
beware of chronic stress!!
It is important to note that this varies depending on the source of the stress. It is not the same if the stress is chronic and has been present for a long time or if the stress is the result of something new that occurred, referred to as acute stress. Chewing gum can help football players reduce stress and anxiety if they are experiencing acute stress.
How does Chewing Gum Improve a Footballer’s Abilities?
Players with faster reflexes and response times have faster body movement and a higher level of agility. This causes their muscles to contract faster, giving them the ability to run faster and jump slightly higher. Chewing gum gives football players a competitive advantage over their opponents.
We now know that football is played with the brain rather than the body. And we’ve told the players about the incredible cognitive benefits of chewing gum. When a footballer’s brain works faster and smarter, it shows in their performance.
How many times have we seen geniuses like Sergio Busquets leave us in awe of his brilliance, which is less about his slender physical stature and more about his incredible mind?
Do Footballers Chew Gum as a Force of Habit?
It can all come down to a habit of doing something. This is also true when football players chew gum. Footballers frequently do this because it has become a habit, whether for the purpose of keeping them calm or for medical reasons.
It is the habit of chewing, not the gum, that is the problem. Sunflower seeds, candy, or beef jerky are all possibilities. We can even say that most footballers are probably unaware of the benefits of chewing gum and the research that supports it. It has simply become their habit. It’s as simple as that.
Regardless of the motivation, the fact remains that even if it has become a habit, it still makes them feel relaxed and less anxious. This boosts their confidence and can improve their performance.
Keep in mind that the gum you select may have varying effects on your body. The hardness of gum affects changes in blood flow to the brain. Gum of moderate hardness contributes more to increased blood flow than gum of extreme hardness or softness.
Famous Coaches and Footballers Known for Chewing Gum
Sir Alex Ferguson
Sir Alex Ferguson had an impact on Manchester United. He is the manager who has brought them the most trophies and is truly one of the greatest managers in football history. Among his many accomplishments, he was also well-known for his habit of chewing gum. This was his signature and a habit he maintained throughout his career.
It was frequently observed that as the game progressed, particularly when the games were close, “Fergie” chewed the gum more vigorously. This was obviously his way of dealing with higher levels of stress. Chewing gum helped him stay calm and focused when making important decisions.
chewed gum; a souvenir?
The event from last year demonstrates how much this shaped the football world and influenced football fans. On May 13th, 2013, former Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson played his final Premier League game against West Bromwich Albion. Aside from the 5-5 score, this game will be remembered as the one in which Fergie chewed his last gum as Manchester United manager.
He apparently dropped it on the ground after the game, and one of the fans picked it up. This piece of gum fetched 456,000 euros on eBay. What a fantastic figure for gum!
Marcos Evangelista de Moraes, affectionately known as Cafu by all AC Milan fans. Cafu won six trophies with Rossoneri and is regarded as one of the best right fullbacks of all time. The Brazilian was known for his impressive skills and is credited with transforming the role of right full-back into the attacking role that it is today.
This is not the only thing for which it is well-known. Cafu is a footballer which fans all around the world know as a player “with a smile on his face and a chewing gum in his mouth.” These two characteristics became his brand.
Cafu played fast-paced, high-intensity football. Chewing gum, it seems, helped him maintain his energy and concentration in defense. He maintained a high level of focus throughout the game by chewing gum.
Chewing gum by football players is a long-standing tradition. This assisted some players in relieving stress and remaining focused during the game. Chewing gum increases activity in the frontal lobe of the brain. This increases cognitive functions by making the brain cortex more alert and vivid. Chewing gum could give you an advantage on the field. However, keep in mind that this is entirely subjective.
Although chewing gum can help your teammate improve his performance, it will not improve your game. This is an important point to remember. Simply chewing gum will not improve your game.
Finally, chewing gum is not unique to football players. This custom has spread to many other sports, including baseball and cricket. This habit is also used by these players to stay calm and focused during play.
Here are Some of our Favourite Football (Soccer) Cleats
Here we will be giving more of an opinion, rather than facts. Are the cleats worth the price that they are being sold at? Should you upgrade from your current cleats, depending on what boots you own? What features stand out in these cleats? If any. Does it do the job? Speed, control, stability etc.
Depending on your needs/preferences. We can also mention its durability, if we have collected enough data on the specific cleats.
What did we expect vs. what we got. Is it maybe overrated/underrated?
Here’s our pick from the very best of the bunch.
On your way to the pro leagues? Here’s our pick.
Want something to start with? Have a look at our pick.