Championing the over 55’s demographic, squash player Barry Watkins has just become our latest World of Sport Ambassador.
As a successful junior player, Barry turned professional in 1980 and fast became a world ranking player. Unfortunately, Barry’s career was cut short after being struck down with glandular fever before becoming a pedestrian victim of a road accident, doing damage to his right shoulder and arm. Despite this, Barry reached a world ranking of 50 before retiring in 1986.
Thirty years later, Barry, who now works in the fitness industry, is back on the court with an aim to compete in the World Masters Open in 2018.
Barry’s training regime varies depending on the day of the week. However, he usually aims to complete an hour and a half on the squash court as well as doing extra running, skipping, stretching and strength work at the gym.
The decision to train again
After taking an early retirement post injury, Barry’s decision to start playing again was made in 2016 when he spent three days with Jahangir Khan, regarded as the world’s most successful squash player. Jahangir encouraged Barry to finish what he started years before, concentrating on the over 55’s category. This soon became Barry’s ultimate goal. As well as this, head of the Manchester Squash Academy, Josh Taylor, took Barry under his wing and continues to support his ambition to this day.
Sleeping through recovery
As he embarks on his goal to enter the 2018 World Masters Open, Barry spends a gruelling four to five hours a day training so rest and sleep is vital to his regime. Knowing that a bad night’s sleep can cause him to be physically and mentally off pace while playing, Barry needed a bed to complement his body’s demands. Opting for a Hybrid Fusion bed, Barry found this not only comforting but supportive, allowing him to drop off to sleep quickly.
In Barry’s Words
“Rest and sleep plays a huge part when it comes to sporting success – especially for the over 55’s. The comfort and support of a Sealy mattress helps me recover from a day of training, allowing me to perform to my best potential. My Sealy mattress is highly important to me as I continue my training, and I would recommend one to people of all ages.”