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The ergogenic effects of carbohydrate ingestion during simulated hurling match-play

Updated: Jun 28, 2020

Collins, K., McRobert, A., Morton, J. P., & Doran, D. (2018). The ergogenic effects of carbohydrate ingestion during simulated hurling match-play. Presented at the In: Proceedings of the 23rd Annual Congress of the European College of Sport Science, 4-7th July, Dublin/Ireland, 2018.

INTRODUCTION: Carbohydrate consumption before and during intermittent exercise has been shown to delay fatigue and improve performance. Carbohydrate supplementation may, therefore, benefit intermittent exercise performance such as that which occurs in hurling. Therefore, the aim of the present study was to investigate the ergogenic effects of carbohydrate ingestion during simulated hurling match-play. METHODS: Eight hurling players (Age: 22 ± 3yrs; Height: 1.77 ± 0.06m; Body Mass: 77 ± 4 kg; VO2max: 56.6 ± 3.2 ml·kg·min-1) participated in this investigation. During the hurling shuttle protocol either a carbohydrate (CHO) solution (0.8 g/kg body mass), or a placebo (a similarly coloured, flavoured and textured solution) was consumed at 0, 18, 36 and 54 min of exercise (PLA). Experimental trials were conducted in a double blind, cross-over fashion. During the protocol work rate was measured. Expired air, heart rate, blood lactate and rating of perceived exertion was collected across each trial. Venous blood was collected on three occasions throughout the protocol. Lactate, glucose, betahydroxybuterate, glycerol and non-esterified fatty acids (NEFA) was analysed. The participants undertook a repeated anaerobic sprint test at 3 separate time points. The data were analysed using two-factor (trial x time) analysis of variance with repeated measures. RESULTS: Despite trends there was limited variation in running performance and physiological measures observed. A significant (p<. 001) interaction between trials for plasma glucose, NEFA, plasma glycerol and lactate was observed. A significant (p=.033) interaction between trials for average 35-m sprint time was observed. The average sprint time increased significantly (p< .001) across both trials with quicker times observed during the CHO trial. CONCLUSION: Carbohydrate ingestion enhances hurling specific exercise capacity. The findings support the view that increases in supply of exogenous carbohydrates leads to an increase in the utilisation of carbohydrates as an energy source at the expense of lipids. There was also a trend for an increase in high speed running performance in comparison to the placebo. A carbohydrate supplementation strategy can offer performance related benefits for hurling players during math-play.

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