Sport, Water Sport & Diabetes, an analysis by Ines Jakopanec

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During this weekend you may have noticed several initiatives at world level focused on diabetes. This is because next 14th November is the date of “World Diabetes Day” and organisations all round the world are promoting events regarding sensibilisation about these issues. Thanks to the contribution of our Ineska Jakopanec on the website, we are happy to share an interesting article about it.

“Sport & Diabetes” is indeed a never-ending topic of all diabetes lectures, in particular since sports related topics have been getting more and more important year after year. The number of people with diabetes is getting bigger and the encouragement of Ines is to carry on your sport activities, without considering diabetes an obstacles. In her article, Ines tells her story and her pride for being part of her water polo team. Since she was 6 years old she has been practicising different water sports, in particular swimming and synchronized swimming before going to water polo.

She discovered her diabetes when she was practicing synchronized swimming, but – in spite of that – she kept doing sports. “When practicing any sport – she writes – sugar tends to fall – and it is important for it not to fall too much. It is not easy, but the crucial thing is not to be discouraged, even if there are days when you cannot train or play. Adrenaline also influences blood sugar – she says – and it is very important to understand how your body responds to certain efforts. Moreover, facing day by day diabetes, you have to understand what to eat before and during training”.

Achieving the desired sugar level is indeed largely dependent on what kind of training you will have and how long this training will last, and even though Ines admits that there is not a “perfect recipe” fitting to all situations, she does not give up. “As life is not perfect, our sugar level can not be perfect – she affirms – and sometimes i would like to forget about it and not even mesure it in fear of what the level of shugar will be. But when i check the number on my sugar level monitor, I must not be afraid, but it must be an encouragement and motivator to do better and improve my capacities in dealing with it”.

Even with diabetes, sports can indeed be practiced both recreationally and professionally with trainings every day and even twice. The well-known diabetic/ taekwondo athlete, Anamarija Runtić the became European Champion and the multiple champion of Croatia. And this year we had another example with the water-polo HASK Mladost player Ivan Marcelić, who won with the Croatian national team the gold medal at the World Championship.

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