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Acute protease supplementation effects on muscle damage and recovery across consecutive days of cycle racing


Shing, CM and Chong, SJ and Driller, MW and Fell, JW, Acute protease supplementation effects on muscle damage and recovery across consecutive days of cycle racing, European Journal of Sport Science, 16, (2) pp. 206-212. ISSN 1746-1391 (2015) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

© 2015 European College of Sport Science

DOI: doi:10.1080/17461391.2014.1001878


Bromelain, a mixture of proteases obtained from pineapples, has been demonstrated to reduce exercise-induced muscle damage and inflammation, enhancing recovery. This investigation aimed to establish if markers of muscle damage and testosterone were influenced by acute bromelain supplementation in competitive cyclists taking part in a six-day cycle stage race. Fifteen highly trained cyclists [age: 22, 𝑆𝒳̄  = 1.2 years, height: 1.79, 𝑆𝒳̄  = 0.01 m, body mass: 68.69, 𝑆𝒳̄  = 1.97 kg] were supplemented with either bromelain (1000 mg·day−1) (n = 8) or a placebo (n = 7) across six days of competitive racing in a randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. Blood was collected from each cyclist on days one, three and six of racing and analysed for creatine kinase (CK), myoglobin, lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) and testosterone. CK activity (P < 0.001, d = 17.4–18.8), LDH activity (P < 0.004, d = 0.5–2.5) and myoglobin concentration (P < 0.007, d = 3.4–4.8) were elevated from pre-race on days three and six of racing in both groups. Testosterone concentrations were significantly lower on the final day of racing (P = 0.03, d = 1.3) and there was a trend for bromelain to maintain testosterone concentrations across the race period (P = 0.05, d = 1.04–1.70) when compared to placebo. Fatigue rating was lower in the bromelain group on day four of racing (P = 0.01). Consecutive days of competitive cycling were associated with increased markers of muscle damage and a reduction in circulating testosterone across the race period. Bromelain supplementation reduced subjective feelings of fatigue and was associated with a trend to maintain testosterone concentration.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:bromelain, creatine kinase, myoglobin, testosterone, lactate dehydrogenase
Research Division:Health Sciences
Research Group:Sports science and exercise
Research Field:Exercise physiology
Objective Division:Health
Objective Group:Specific population health (excl. Indigenous health)
Objective Field:Specific population health (excl. Indigenous health) not elsewhere classified
UTAS Author:Shing, CM (Dr Cecilia Kitic)
UTAS Author:Chong, SJ (Mrs Sarah Chong)
UTAS Author:Driller, MW (Dr Matthew Driller)
UTAS Author:Fell, JW (Associate Professor James Fell)
ID Code:99541
Year Published:2015
Web of Science® Times Cited:8
Deposited By:Health Sciences
Deposited On:2015-03-27
Last Modified:2017-10-31

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