The effects of contrast bathing and compression therapy on muscular performance

French, Duncan, Thompson, Kevin, Garland, Stephen, Barnes, Christopher, Portas, Matthew, Hood, Peter and Wilkes, Graeme (2008) The effects of contrast bathing and compression therapy on muscular performance. Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise, 40 (1). pp. 1297-1306. ISSN 0195-9131

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Contrast bathing (CB) and compression garments (CG) are widely used to promote recovery.

Purpose: To evaluate CB and CG as regeneration strategies after exercise-induced muscle damage (EIMD).

Methods: Baseline values of muscle soreness, serum creatine kinase (CK) and myoglobin (Mb), joint range of motion, limb girth, 10- or 30-m sprint, countermovement jump (CMJ), and five repetition maximum squat were completed by 26 young men who then undertook a resistance exercise challenge (REC) to induce EIMD: 6 × 10 parallel squats at 100% body weight with 5-s one repetition maximum eccentric squat superimposed onto each set. After the REC, subjects were separated into three intervention groups: CB, CG, and control (CONT). Forty-eight hours after REC, the subjects exercise performance was reassessed. CK and Mb were also measured +1, +24, and +48 h post-REC.

Results: CK was elevated at +24 h ([up arrow]140%; [up arrow]161%; [up arrow]270%), and Mb was elevated at +1 h ([up arrow]523%; [up arrow]458%; [up arrow]682%) in CB, CG, and CONT. Within-group large effect sizes for loge[CK] were found for CB at +24 h (0.80) and +48 h (0.84). Area under the [Mb] curve was lower in CB compared with CG and CONT (P <= 0.05). At +48 h, significant differences from baseline were found in all groups for CMJ (CG, [down arrow]5.1%; CB, [down arrow]4.4%; CONT, [down arrow]8.5%) and soreness ([up arrow]213%; [up arrow]284%; [up arrow]284%). Soreness transiently fell at +1 h compared with post-REC in the CB group. At +48 h, midthigh girth increased in CB ([up arrow]1.4%) and CONT ([up arrow]1.6%), whereas 30-m sprint time increased in CG ([up arrow]2%).

Conclusion: No hierarchy of recovery effects was found. Neither contrast bathing nor compression acted to promote acute recovery from EIMD any more effectively than passive conditions, although contrast bathing may transiently attenuate postexercise soreness.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: eccentric exercise, muscle damage, resistance exercise, creatine kinase
Subjects: C600 Sports Science
Department: Faculties > Health and Life Sciences > Sport, Exercise and Rehabilitation
Depositing User: EPrint Services
Date Deposited: 05 Feb 2010 17:20
Last Modified: 12 Oct 2019 15:29

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