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THE JOURNAL OF SPORTS MEDICINE AND PHYSICAL FITNESS
Rivista di Medicina, Traumatologia e Psicologia dello Sport
Indexed/Abstracted in: Chemical Abstracts, CINAHL, Current Contents/Clinical Medicine, EMBASE, PubMed/MEDLINE, Science Citation Index Expanded (SciSearch), Scopus
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ORIGINAL ARTICLES EXCERCISE PHYSIOLOGY AND BIOMECHANICS
The Journal of Sports Medicine and Physical Fitness 2015 April;55(4):267-72
Impact of cool and warm water immersion on 50-m sprint performance and lactate recovery in swimmers
Soultanakis H. N., Nafpaktiitou D., Mandaloufa S. M. ✉
Laboratory of Aquatics Division, Faculty of Physical Education and Sports Sciences, University of Athens, Athens, Greece
AIM: The purpose of this study was to investigate the impact of recovery by cool or warm water immersion, between two 50-m sprints on performance determinants and lactate responses in simulated competition conditions.
METHODS: Eight well-trained sprint swimmers (21± 2.4 years), after an initial warm-up and 15-minutes recovery with no immersion (NI), performed a maximal 50m sprint. A second 50m sprint followed after a second 15-minute recovery period with passive immersion in either warm (WI, 30 °C), or cool water (CI, 26.7 °C). In a crossover design, all subjects repeated the trial 48 hours later utilizing the alternate immersion temperature. During the 50-m sprints, time and stroke characteristics were recorded. Blood lactate and heart rates were measured before and after the trials. Strength and flexibility were recorded before and after immersions and ratings of perceived exertion were evaluated.
RESULTS: There were no significant differences in time, event velocity, or stroke rate, between any of the trials. With WI, a significant reduction of handgrip strength was observed (P=0.029) with lower ratings of perceived exertion observed after the sprint. Higher resting lactate levels were recorded, prior to swimming, after both the 15-minute WI and CI water recoveries (P<0.01) as compared to NI. No correlation was observed between swim performance times and starting or peak lactate levels, with any type of recovery intervention (R2=0.047; slope NS from zero).
CONCLUSION: Recovery by cool (26.7 °C) or warm (30 °C) water immersion does not affect velocity or stroke characteristics in a 50-m freestyle sprint, even when widely employed performance related determinants such as resting lactate levels and perceived exertion are not optimal.