Active ischemic pre-conditioning does not additively improve short-term high-intensity cycling performance when combined with caffeine ingestion in trained young men

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We investigated the effect of ischemic preconditioning (IPC) with and without caffeine supplementation on mean power output (MPO) during a 4-min cycling time-trial (TT). In a double-blinded, randomized, crossover-design, 11 trained men performed a TT on 4 days separated by ∼1 week. One hour before TT, participants ingested either caffeine (3 mg kg bw−1) or placebo pills, after which femoral blood-flow was either restricted with occlusion cuffs inflated to ∼180 mmHg (IPC), or sham-restricted (0–10 mmHg; Sham) during 3 × 2-min low-intensity cycling (10% of incremental peak power output). Then, participants performed a standardized warm-up followed by the TT. Plasma lactate and K+ concentrations and ratings of perceived exertion (RPE) were measured throughout trials. TT MPO was 382 ± 17 W in Placebo + Sham and not different from Placebo + IPC (−1 W; 95% CI: −9 to 7; p = 0.848; d: 0.06), whereas MPO was higher with Caffeine + Sham (+6W; 95% CI: −2 to 14; p = 0.115; d: 0.49) and Caffeine + IPC (+8 W; 95% CI: 2–13; p = 0.019; d: 0.79) versus Placebo + Sham. MPO differences were attributed to caffeine (caffeine main-effect: +7 W; 95% CI: 2–13; p = 0.015; d: 0.54. IPC main-effect: 0 W; 95% CI: −6 to 7; p = 0.891; d: 0.03; caffeine × IPC interaction-effect: p = 0.580; d: 0.17). TT RPE and plasma variables were not different between treatments. In conlcusion, IPC with co-ingestion of placebo does not improve short-term high-intensity performance in trained men versus a double-placebo control (Placebo + Sham) and does not additively enhance performance with caffeine. These data do not support IPC as a useful strategy for athletes prior to competition but confirms caffeine's performance-enhancing effect.

TidsskriftEuropean Journal of Sport Science
Udgave nummer6
Sider (fra-til)693-702
StatusUdgivet - 2024

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© 2024 The Authors. European Journal of Sport Science published by Wiley-VCH GmbH on behalf of European College of Sport Science.

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