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J Sci Med Sport. 2009 May;12(3):417-21. doi: 10.1016/j.jsams.2007.12.011. Epub 2008 Jun 11.

Effect of water immersion methods on post-exercise recovery from simulated team sport exercise.

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  • 1The University of Western Australia, Human Movement and Exercise Science, Crawley, Western Australia 6009, Australia.

Abstract

This study aimed to compare the efficacy of hot/cold contrast water immersion (CWI), cold-water immersion (COLD) and no recovery treatment (control) as post-exercise recovery methods following exhaustive simulated team sports exercise. Repeated sprint ability, strength, muscle soreness and inflammatory markers were measured across the 48-h post-exercise period. Eleven male team-sport athletes completed three 3-day testing trials, each separated by 2 weeks. On day 1, baseline measures of performance (10 m x 20 m sprints and isometric strength of quadriceps, hamstrings and hip flexors) were recorded. Participants then performed 80 min of simulated team sports exercise followed by a 20-m shuttle run test to exhaustion. Upon completion of the exercise, and 24h later, participants performed one of the post-exercise recovery procedures for 15 min. At 48 h post-exercise, the performance tests were repeated. Blood samples and muscle soreness ratings were taken before and immediately after post-exercise, and at 24h and 48 h post-exercise. In comparison to the control and CWI treatments, COLD resulted in significantly lower (p<0.05) muscle soreness ratings, as well as in reduced decrements to isometric leg extension and flexion strength in the 48-h post-exercise period. COLD also facilitated a more rapid return to baseline repeated sprint performances. The only benefit of CWI over control was a significant reduction in muscle soreness 24h post-exercise. This study demonstrated that COLD following exhaustive simulated team sports exercise offers greater recovery benefits than CWI or control treatments.

PMID:
18547863
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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