Tag Archives: exercise performance

Coffee, Caffeine, and Exercise

16 Nov

cup-of-coffee1

Coffee sometimes gets a bad rap.  It’s full of antioxidants and essential nutrients, and has been linked with potential health benefits including: protecting against type 2 diabetes, Parkinson’s disease, liver disease, liver cancer, and promoting a healthy heart.

Additionally, coffee (caffeine) can improve energy levels, cognition, and physical performance.

Caffeine is one of two (legal) supplements documented to improve athletic and exercise performance (creatine being the other).

Athletes and active individuals routinely ingest caffeine to facilitate improvement during athletic activity, and resistance and endurance exercise.

Although the research regarding the relationship between caffeine and aerobic exercise performance is mixed, the majority of studies corroborate an improvement in resistance exercise performance after caffeine ingestion.

According to a recent study in the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, “Coffee (0.15 g/kg) and decaffeinated coffee plus caffeine (5 mg/kg) have the ability to improve performance during a resistance exercise protocol.” (Richardson, D, et.al.)  This effect was especially significant in the short term.

The findings of this study include:

  • Caffeine increased contractility and force production of skeletal muscle
  • Caffeine enhanced neuromuscular transmission and maximal muscle activation
  • Increased calcium release and sodium-potassium pump activity
  • Inhibited negative effects of pain perception
  • Improved reaction time, cognition, and mood

Please see related articles:

Caffeine Reduces Post-Exercise Muscle Soreness

How Does Caffeine Affect Athletic Performance?

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Compression Garments and Their Effects on Exercise Performance and Recovery

4 Apr

2012_Under_Armour_ColdGear_Mens_Ventilated_Compression_Shorts[1]Companies like Under Armour have revolutionized the compression garment industry.  And it has gone way beyond functionality, as this attire has become interwoven into our fashion culture.  Over the past several years, researchers have studied the use of compression garments to determine their potential effects on exercise performance and recovery.

The theory behind these products is that the compression they provide improves/increases circulation, which, in turn, enhances performance and recovery (keep in mind medical compression stockings have been used in the treatment of poor venous blood flow for more than 50 years).

Compression garments speed recovery through direct compression and improved muscle oxygenation. Wearing these garments after exercise has been shown to virtually eliminate delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS) and has shown real improvements in muscle recovery.

Recent research with athletes has shown that compression garments may provide ergogenic benefits (enhancing physical performance) for athletes during exercise by positively influencing psychological factors. Research has also shown that compression garments may promote enhanced recovery during periods following strenuous exercise.  Other investigations have suggested that the use of compression garments during recovery periods may reduce the symptoms associated with delayed onset muscle soreness.

Although there have been limited investigations linking the influence of compression garments on athletic performance, it appears the use of compression garments may have a positive effect on athletes during exercise and during recovery periods following exercise. To date, no studies have reported negative effects on exercise performance, and so the use of compression garments may provide a useful training tool for athletes across a wide variety of sports.

Ultimately, it appears that compression clothing is an effective recovery strategy following exercise-induced muscle damage.

Get STRONGER, Get FASTER!

Your thoughts?

Compression Garments and Their Effects on Exercise Performance and Recovery

11 Mar

2012_Under_Armour_ColdGear_Mens_Ventilated_Compression_Shorts[1]Companies like Under Armour have revolutionized the compression garment industry.  And it has gone way beyond functionality, as this attire has become interwoven into our fashion culture.  Over the past several years, researchers have studied the use of compression garments to determine their potential effects on exercise performance and recovery.

The theory behind these products is that the compression they provide improves/increases circulation, which, in turn, enhances performance and recovery (keep in mind medical compression stockings have been used in the treatment of poor venous blood flow for more than 50 years).

Compression garments speed recovery through direct compression and improved muscle oxygenation. Wearing these garments after exercise has been shown to virtually eliminate delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS) and has shown real improvements in muscle recovery.

Recent research with athletes has shown that compression garments may provide ergogenic benefits (enhancing physical performance) for athletes during exercise by positively influencing psychological factors. Research has also shown that compression garments may promote enhanced recovery during periods following strenuous exercise.  Other investigations have suggested that the use of compression garments during recovery periods may reduce the symptoms associated with delayed onset muscle soreness.

Although there have been limited investigations linking the influence of compression garments on athletic performance, it appears the use of compression garments may have a positive effect on athletes during exercise and during recovery periods following exercise. To date, no studies have reported negative effects on exercise performance, and so the use of compression garments may provide a useful training tool for athletes across a wide variety of sports.

Ultimately, it appears that compression clothing is an effective recovery strategy following exercise-induced muscle damage.

Get STRONGER, Get FASTER!

Your thoughts?

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