Effects of Sodium Bicarbonate Ingestion on Performance-Ergogenic?

Can something that you have in your fridge help your athletic performance? No, I am not talking about that fungus growing on the mystery meat in the back. I am talking about baking soda (aka sodium bicarbonate).

The short answer is that it may serve to help decrease that burning sensation from high levels of muscle work (see an older blog post on it and beta-alanine HERE on it) . The downside is that an effective dose may cause stomach issues in some, so be sure to do a trial before your next big event. It it hard to win the big race with your head in a trash can!

This study in the lab, did not show any performance changes though. Where else can you get studies they literally just came out days ago, so stay tuned here for more cutting edge performance tips!

Effectsof Sodium Bicarbonate Ingestion on Performance and Perceptual Response in a Lab Simulated BMX Cycling Qualification Series .[J Strength Cond Res. Sept 22 2008]

1Department of Physical Education and Sport, University of Granada, Granada, Spain; 2Faculty of Sport, Pablo de Olavide University, Sevilla, Spain; 3Institute of Exercise Biology and Physiotherapy, University of Tartu, Estonia; and 4Spanish Cycling Federation, Madrid, Spain.

Zabala, M, Requena, B, Sánchez-Muñoz, C, González-Badillo, JJ, García, I, Oöpik, V, and Pääsuke, M. Effects of sodium bicarbonate ingestion on performance and perceptual responses in a laboratory-simulated BMX cycling qualification series. J Strength Cond Res 22(5): 1645-1653, 2008-

The objective of this study was to examine the effect of sodium bicarbonate (NaHCO3-) ingestion on performance and perceptual responses in a laboratory-simulated bicycle motocross (BMX) qualification series. Nine elite BMX riders volunteered to participate in this study. After familiarization, subjects undertook two trials involving repeated sprints (3 x Wingate tests [WTs] separated by 30 minutes of recovery; WT1, WT2, WT3). Ninety minutes before each trial, subjects ingested either NaHCO3- or placebo in a counterbalanced, randomly assigned, double-blind manner. Each trial was separated by 4 days.

Performance variables of peak power, mean power, time to peak power, and fatigue index were calculated for each sprint. Ratings of perceived exertion were obtained after each sprint, and ratings of perceived readiness were obtained before each sprint.

No significant differences were observed in performance variables between successive sprints or between trials. For the NaHCO3- trial, peak blood lactate during recovery was greater after WT2 (p

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