Finding the Right Sports Nutrition Professional for You

The sports nutrition world is one full of clouded practices and endless trends. Trends are driven by online bloggers, athletes, celebrities, strength and conditioning coaches, physicians, and even Registered Dietitians. Recently, I’ve had the opportunity to work with several athletes who have experienced nutrient deficiencies and poor performance as a result of implementing nutritional recommendations by one (or sometimes a mix) of these individuals. Athletes are in vulnerable positions with many individuals trying to impart their “expertise” and opinions – creating mass insecurities and confusion for an athlete focused on doing all the right things to excel in their sport.

About a month ago I had the opportunity to attend Own the Podium’s Sport Science and Innovation Conference in Toronto, Ontario. For three full days, I had the opportunity to submerge myself in a plethora of medical and nutrition experts working with Canada’s Olympic athletes.

Workshops I had the opportunity to attend were driven by world-renowned experts speaking about topics including: current and innovative nutrition trends in the athletic world (e.g. glycogen depleted training for augmenting performance capacity), athlete-specific body composition assessment and strength/errors with current techniques, a sport-psychologist driven session analyzing methodical approaches in working with weight-sensitive female athletes to mitigate onset of the repercussions associated with the Female Athlete Triad. Last but not least, was a truly eye-opening session in assessing study quality along with design strengths/flaws, validation of research results and whether findings can truly be extrapolated into practices.

Attending this conference is always a humbling experience simply from being surrounded by such knowledgeable experts. It is refreshing to leave knowing that whether you’re someone who has worked with athletes for three years, 10 years or 25 years, the learning truly never ends. Sports nutrition is always evolving. I consider myself truly fortunate and privileged to be able to work with each athlete that comes through the doors here at Revive Wellness. I believe that anybody (including myself) sharing this opportunity to support athletes in performing at their maximum potential needs to ask themselves if they are putting in the work and staying on top of the evolving research to support their athletes at the highest capacity. An athlete owes it to themselves to do the same when looking for nutrition support for their training and competition.

If you’re an athlete looking for nutrition coaching, consider the following before making the investment to have a nutrition program created:

  • What is this individual’s background? Do they have at minimum a degree in nutrition or exercise physiology where recommendations are created in an evidence/research-based manner?
  • Do they have higher levels of sport-specific training? (E.g. The International Olympic Committee Diploma in Sport Nutrition Diploma Program, the International Society of Sports Nutrition Diploma Program, and registration as a Board Certified Specialist in Sports Dietetics.)
  • Do they regularly attend conferences to ensure their practices stay up-to-date with the always evolving research?
  • Who does this individual work with and what do their athletes say about their nutrition care?
  • Does this individual have an athletic background where they truly feel and understanding the realistic obstacles and hurdles in the life of an athlete?
  • Is this individual open-minded and able to adapt nutrition recommendations based on individualized preferences, training programs, allergies and any other intolerance?
  • Does this individual understand the athlete’s needs, which include travel, body composition manipulation (testing and retesting throughout the year to track progression), a periodized approach to supplementation where supplements are added in to support an athlete’s performance/training schedule at the right times and dosages?
  • How does this individual work together with other members of an athlete’s support team such as coaches, physiotherapists, physicians, strength and conditioning coaches, and parents/spouses?

Optimal performance requires involvement from a number of sports professionals. If you are an athlete seeking nutrition coaching to help improve your performance, we’d be happy to sit down with you and identify any barriers and help you achieve your performance goals.


Many health benefit plans include coverage for Dietitian services
Check with your provider to see if an appointment with a Dietitian can come as no additional cost to you or your family