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A comparison of different heat maintenance methods implemented during a simulated half-time period in professional Rugby Union players
Journal of Science and Medicine in Sport, Volume: 21, Issue: 3, Pages: 327 - 332
Swansea University Author: Liam Kilduff
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ObjectivesIn thermoneutral conditions, half-time is associated with reductions in body temperature that acutely impair performance. This laboratory-based study compared active, passive, and combined methods of half-time heat maintenance.DesignRandomised, counterbalanced, cross-overMethodsAfter a sta...
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ObjectivesIn thermoneutral conditions, half-time is associated with reductions in body temperature that acutely impair performance. This laboratory-based study compared active, passive, and combined methods of half-time heat maintenance.DesignRandomised, counterbalanced, cross-overMethodsAfter a standardised warm-up (WU) and 15 min of rest, professional Rugby Union players (n = 20) completed a repeated sprint test (RSSA1). Throughout a simulated half-time (temperature: 20.5 ± 0.3 °C; humidity: 53 ± 5%), players then rested (Control) or wore a survival jacket (Passive) for 15 min, or performed a 7 min rewarm-up after either 8 min of rest (Active), or 8 min of wearing a survival jacket (Combined). A second RSSA (RSSA2) followed. Core temperature (Tcore) and peak power output (PPO; during countermovement jumps; CMJ) were measured at baseline, post-RSSA1, pre-RSSA2.ResultsAll half-time interventions attenuated reductions in Tcore (0.62 ± 0.28 °C) observed in Control (Passive: −0.23 ± 0.09 °C; Active: −0.17 ± 0.09 °C; Combined: −0.03 ± 0.10 °C, all p < 0.001) but Combined preserved Tcore the most (p < 0.001). All half-time interventions attenuated the 385 ± 137 W reduction in Control PPO (Passive: −213 ± 79 W; Active: −83 ± 72 W; Combined: +10 ± 52 W; all p < 0.001); with best PPO maintenance in Combined (p ≤ 0.001). The fastest sprints occurred in RSSA2 in Combined (6.74 ± 0.21 s; p<0.001) but Passive (6.82 ± 0.04 s) and Active (6.80 ± 0.05 s) sprints were 0.4% (p = 0.011) and 0.8% (p = 0.002) quicker than Control (6.85 ± 0.04 s), respectively.ConclusionsWhile the efficacy of passive and active heat maintenance methods was supported throughout a simulated half-time, a combined approach to attenuating heat losses appeared the most beneficial for Tcore and subsequent PPO and sprint performance in professional Rugby Union players.
Temperature; intermittent; warm-up; rewarm-up; soccer
College of Engineering