Question Regarding Sports Performance Supplements

I have a question. So, I am a 47 year old, ex div.2 basketball player, that has recently started getting more involved in some more competive basketball games and my anxiety seems to be getting the best of me. Just have not been relaxed when stepping on the court. I am still in good shape and feel good warming up, but don’t feel relaxed once the game starts.

What supplements do you recommend to take before playing?


Honestly it might simply be a matter of “getting back into it”. I’ll give you an example, I started coaching high school football again. I did coach for 11 years but it has been close to 20 years since I’ve coached.

Now, I’ve given seminars in 21 countries and about 100 podcasts. So I’m comfortable presenting in front of people. Well the first practice I coached I was a nervous wreak!!! When I presented myself to the players I’m pretty sure that I sounded like an idiot.

The point is that the nervousness can be due to the fact that you a) still have high expectations out of yourself b) a competitive spirit c) don’t want to let people down AND d) that it’s been a while.

So your expectations, at this moment, far exceeds your competency. But as you will play more, the competitive game will get back to you and the nervousness will go away.

There are some supplements that can reduce adrenaline (nervousness, performance anxiety is an excess of adrenaline) and calm your brain down. The problem is that they can also reduce your performance potential by decreasing neuronal excitation too much.

Look at the following graph:

Too much arousal (which is what happens at the moment when you play) will lead to anxiety, tightness, thinking too much, overreacting, etc.

But too little arousal will reduce speed, reactivity, competitiveness, thinking processes, strength, power, etc.

So if you try to “bring yourself to the right of the curve” with “calming” supplements, you have the very real possibility of shutting yourself down.


Thank you very much for your response and all of the information. Your own example definitely helps me put things into perspective. The graph is very helpful.

You really nailed it my expectations may be to high, I haven’t really lost my competitive spirit, and I have been playing with my son in games and don’t want to let him down. I will continue to give it some time and hopefully will regain a sense of being relaxed when on the court.

Thanks again, for all of the great information.

That’s pretty awesome man!

I’ve been playing a little ball lately myself. It took me quite a few weeks to settle in and let the game come to me (I know, Kobe never did that), and I didn’t even have any added pressure like my son being there.

Thanks man. Your right, Kobe never did that. I went to the gym yesterday and wasn’t plan on playing but my son got me involved in 3 games and I did feel a lot better yesterday. Christian’s information definitely helped me.

I also started to monitor my caffeine intake. I think caffeine a little too close to playing b-ball may be also causing too much arousal and impairing my performance based on the graph. Back in the day I could have a few energy drinks before playing, but I don’t think that works for me anymore.

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I was kinda joking here. I ain’t Kobe.

Glad it’s improving!