Inaugural Malta ‘Kickin’ Cuisine’ series in top form!

The content originally appeared on: Jamaica News Loop News

Proper nutrition is fundamental to athletic endurance, particularly for young footballers striving for peak physical performance.

On this principle, the Malta team, in collaboration with Professional Football Jamaica Limited (PFJL), hosted a cooking programme dubbed ‘Kickin’ Cuisine To Fuel Your Game’.

As part of the Malta Sparks campaign, the programme is geared towards educating caregivers on the importance of meal-prepping and nutritional fuel for optimal performance.

Malta and the PFJL celebrated the start of the Malta Sparks Campaign with ‘Malta Kickin’ Cuisine To Fuel Your Game’ at The Summit on Saturday, June 29. Photographed are (L-R) Waterhouse Centre Striker Javane Bryan, his coach Levi Monroe, Waterhouse Football Club players Shaheem Stevenson, Adonijah Burford, Sean John Curchar, his aunt Tamara Curchar; Arnett Gardens Football Club player Demarco Hunter, Chef Scarlet Keating; Arnett Gardens Football Players: Sanjay Brown and Malachi Palmer; Malta Brand Ambassador Neville Bell, Malta Brand Manager Jodi-Ann Campbell, Portmore United footballer Romane Foster; PFJL CEO Owen Hill; Malta Junior Brand Manager Cavell Robinson; Portmore United Footballer Caiden Yen; Portmore United Assistant Coach Kevin Derr; Harbour View Football Players: Zaire Douse, Delani Roper, Devonte’ Allen, his mother, Latoya Earle; Brother of Delani Roper, Nicholai Roper; and their mom, Sherrica Harris. (Photos: Contributed)

The event was two-fold, and also marked the appointment of media veteran and retired football coach Neville Bell as Malta’s brand ambassador.

‘It is an honour to be a part of Malta’s community. Having witnessed the talent and potential of our young football players, I take pride in contributing to initiatives that provide essential support for our young footballers. Sports can be rigorous on the minds and bodies of the athletes, so our players need support and guidance in the right direction. With this partnership, I am looking forward to the upcoming projects as we invest in our young football players’ athletic growth and development,’ the newly instated brand ambassador expressed.

The newly instated ambassador also had words of wisdom with the participating caregivers and footballers from the Premier League clubs of Arnett Gardens, Waterhouse, Portmore United, and Harbour View.

In his speech, Bell shared tips on improving football skills, emphasising that achieving excellence requires discipline, consistency, and proper nutrition.

L-R: PFJL CEO Owen Hill, Malta Junior Brand Manager Cavell Robinson, and Malta Brand Ambassador Neville Bell. (Photos: Contributed)

Expounding on this point, Sports Science Expert Rohan Franco Francis assured the caregivers that nutrition can be fun – and affordable as eating from all the food groups may be achieved with ingredients found at home.

He further stated that athletes are in their developmental stage, where their bodies are constantly changing, so they need to eat balanced meals, especially foods from all the food groups.

PFJL CEO Owen Hill was pleased to see the caregivers and footballers so engrossed in the session, which he found to be ‘heartwarming’, and not the norm.

‘We appreciate their dedication as they recognise the importance of developing the tactical, holistic and psychological skills of our under-17 Elite Development Football players, but are also equipping caregivers with the knowledge to provide crucial nutritional support for the athletes,’ he declared.

Following an insightful lesson on the importance of nutrition, caregivers and footballers from the different leagues teamed up to prepare nutritious Malta shakes, using ingredients considered to be affordable, such as oats, milk, bananas, and condensed milk.

As an additional treat, Chef Asia Thomas instructed caregivers and footballers on making easy-to-prepare meals. These include sandwiches and spinach wraps with a choice of fillings like smoked chicken slices, chicken breast, turkey breast slices, shredded cheese, lettuce, cucumbers, red onions, sweet peppers, tomatoes.

Thomas informed guests that the meals are easy to recreate at home and are likely to provide the necessary carbohydrates and proteins the body needs.

‘We aimed to create an interactive and meaningful experience for caregivers and footballers; one they can relate to and implement daily’, Malta Brand Manager Jodi-Ann Campbell stated.

‘While attending matches and supporting athletes is crucial, we believe other bonds can be strengthened in the kitchen. This marks the start of our series of sessions and workshops. We want the footballers to showcase their best selves on the field, so we seek support for these upcoming sessions,’ she added.