Investigating the Ergogenic Potential of Ischemic Preconditioning and Resisted Running on Sprint Performance
Two pre-competition protocols were constructed based on physiological principles related to muscle contractile properties and ischemia-induced metabolic and neural changes. Sprint times over 0-20 m were used to assess the effectiveness of these protocols, which were designed to potentially provide an acute performance-enhancing effect. Highly-trained sprinters were recruited for both studies (Study 1, n = 20; Study 2, n = 18), as this cohort of athletes exhibits minimal inter-sprint variation, allowing changes in performance to be more confidently attributed to the intervention under examination. Neither the resisted sprinting (3, 20 m sprints running against a load equal to ~ 40 % body mass) or ischemic preconditioning protocol (3 x 5 min occlusion) acutely affected sprint performance. These findings indicate that the intensity of the resisted sprint protocol and manner in which the ischemic pre-conditioning protocol was performed provided an insufficient pre-competition stimulus to elicit improvements in sprint performance.