Mechanisms of aerobic performance impairment with heat stress and dehydration.
ABSTRACT Environmental heat stress can challenge the limits of human cardiovascular and temperature regulation, body fluid balance, and thus aerobic performance. This minireview proposes that the cardiovascular adjustments accompanying high skin temperatures (T(sk)), alone or in combination with high core body temperatures (T(c)), provide a primary explanation for impaired aerobic exercise performance in warm-hot environments. The independent (T(sk)) and combined (T(sk) + T(c)) effects of hyperthermia reduce maximal oxygen uptake (Vo(2max)), which leads to higher relative exercise intensity and an exponential decline in aerobic performance at any given exercise workload. Greater relative exercise intensity increases cardiovascular strain, which is a prominent mediator of rated perceived exertion. As a consequence, incremental or constant-rate exercise is more difficult to sustain (earlier fatigue) or requires a slowing of self-paced exercise to achieve a similar sensation of effort. It is proposed that high T(sk) and T(c) impair aerobic performance in tandem primarily through elevated cardiovascular strain, rather than a deterioration in central nervous system (CNS) function or skeletal muscle metabolism. Evaporative sweating is the principal means of heat loss in warm-hot environments where sweat losses frequently exceed fluid intakes. When dehydration exceeds 3% of total body water (2% of body mass) then aerobic performance is consistently impaired independent and additive to heat stress. Dehydration augments hyperthermia and plasma volume reductions, which combine to accentuate cardiovascular strain and reduce Vo(2max). Importantly, the negative performance consequences of dehydration worsen as T(sk) increases.
Article: Tapering for competition: A review[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: The taper is a progressive nonlinear reduction of the training load during a variable period of time, in an attempt to reduce the physiological and psychological stress of daily training and optimize sports performance. Existing research has defined the taper, identified various forms used in contemporary sport, and examined the prescription of training volume, load, intensity, duration, and type (progressive or step). The current literature reveals that tapering strategies may be associated with a competition performance improvement of about 3% (usual range 0.5–6.0%). Particular attention given to nutrition, hydration and recovery strategies during the pre-event taper may help maximize its associated positive effects. Interactions between the taper and long-haul travel, heat, and altitude should be also taken into account with particular attention. Future progress in sports science will play an important part in refining and developing existing tapering methodologies, particularly in the context of multiple peaking for team and racquet sports.Science & Sports 04/2012; · 0.47 Impact Factor
Article: Cold-water immersion decreases cerebral oxygenation but improves recovery after intermittent-sprint exercise in the heat.[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: This study examined the effects of post-exercise cooling on recovery of neuromuscular, physiological, and cerebral hemodynamic responses after intermittent-sprint exercise in the heat. Nine participants underwent three post-exercise recovery trials, including a control (CONT), mixed-method cooling (MIX), and cold-water immersion (10 °C; CWI). Voluntary force and activation were assessed simultaneously with cerebral oxygenation (near-infrared spectroscopy) pre- and post-exercise, post-intervention, and 1-h and 24-h post-exercise. Measures of heart rate, core temperature, skin temperature, muscle damage, and inflammation were also collected. Both cooling interventions reduced heart rate, core, and skin temperature post-intervention (P < 0.05). CWI hastened the recovery of voluntary force by 12.7 ± 11.7% (mean ± SD) and 16.3 ± 10.5% 1-h post-exercise compared to MIX and CONT, respectively (P < 0.01). Voluntary force remained elevated by 16.1 ± 20.5% 24-h post-exercise after CWI compared to CONT (P < 0.05). Central activation was increased post-intervention and 1-h post-exercise with CWI compared to CONT (P < 0.05), without differences between conditions 24-h post-exercise (P > 0.05). CWI reduced cerebral oxygenation compared to MIX and CONT post-intervention (P < 0.01). Furthermore, cooling interventions reduced cortisol 1-h post-exercise (P < 0.01), although only CWI blunted creatine kinase 24-h post-exercise compared to CONT (P < 0.05). Accordingly, improvements in neuromuscular recovery after post-exercise cooling appear to be disassociated with cerebral oxygenation, rather reflecting reductions in thermoregulatory demands to sustain force production.Scandinavian Journal of Medicine and Science in Sports 03/2013; · 2.87 Impact Factor