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The effects of serial and acute NaHCO3 loading in well-trained cyclists


Driller, MW and Gregory, JR and Williams, AD and Fell, JW, The effects of serial and acute NaHCO3 loading in well-trained cyclists, Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, 26, (10) pp. 2791-2797. ISSN 1064-8011 (2012) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

Copyright 2012 National Strength and Conditioning Association

DOI: doi:10.1519/JSC.0b013e318241e18a


Many studies have reported substantial performance gains in well-trained athletes following acute ingestion of sodium bicarbonate (NaHCO3). However, acute NaHCO3 ingestion is not always practical. The aim of the current study was to compare acute NaHCO3 loading with serial NaHCO3 loading (split doses over three days) in well-trained cyclists. Eight male cyclists (mean SD; age = 28 8 years; peak = 66.8 8.4 completed three tests in a double blind, randomized design over a three week time-frame: acute NaHCO3 loading (AL), serial NaHCO3 loading (SL) and a placebo loading condition (P). Following each loading protocol, cyclists completed a 4-minute performance test on a cycling ergometer. was measured during each test and blood samples were taken throughout the study to measure lactate, bicarbonate ion concentration ([HCO3-]) and pH levels. Both the AL and SL trials produced a significantly higher average power in the 4-minute test (mean SD; 3.3 2.0% and 2.3 2.5%; p < 0.001 and p = 0.01 respectively) when compared to the P trial, with no significant difference between AL and SL trials (p = 0.29). The AL trial produced a significantly greater post-loading alkalosis as determined by blood [HCO3-] when compared to the SL and P trial. Both acute and serial NaHCO3 loading significantly improve 4-minute cycling performance when compared to a placebo trial. However, serial NaHCO3 loading may provide a convenient and practical alternative approach for athletes preparing for competition.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:cycling performance, sodium bicarbonate, buffer capacity, pH, ergogenic aids, alkalosis
Research Division:Health Sciences
Research Group:Sports science and exercise
Research Field:Exercise physiology
Objective Division:Health
Objective Group:Evaluation of health and support services
Objective Field:Evaluation of health and support services not elsewhere classified
UTAS Author:Driller, MW (Dr Matthew Driller)
UTAS Author:Gregory, JR (Mr John Gregory)
UTAS Author:Williams, AD (Associate Professor Andrew Williams)
UTAS Author:Fell, JW (Associate Professor James Fell)
ID Code:74221
Year Published:2012
Web of Science® Times Cited:16
Deposited By:Health Sciences A
Deposited On:2011-11-15
Last Modified:2017-11-01

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