To evaluate whether upper-body compression affects power output and selected metabolic, cardiorespiratory, hemodynamic, and perceptual responses during three 3-min sessions of double-poling (DP) sprint.
Ten well-trained male athletes (25 ± 4 y, 180 ± 4 cm, 74.6 ± 3.2 kg) performed such sprints on a DP ski ergometer with and without a long-sleeved compression garment.
Mean power output was not affected by such compression (216 ± 25 W in both cases; P = 1.00, effect size [ES] = 0.00), although blood lactate concentration was lowered (P < .05, ES = 0.50–1.02). Blood gases (ES = 0.07–0.50), oxygen uptake (ES = 0.04–0.28), production of carbon dioxide (ES = 0.01–0.46), heart rate (ES = 0.00–0.21), stroke volume (ES = 0.33–0.81), and cardiac output (ES = 0.20–0.91) were also all unaffected by upper-body compression (best P = 1.00). This was also the case for changes in the tissue saturation index (ES = 0.45–1.17) and total blood content of hemoglobin (ES = 0.09–0.85), as well as ratings of perceived exertion (ES = 0.15–0.88; best P = .96).
The authors conclude that the performance of well-trained athletes during 3 × 3-min DP sprints will not be enhanced by upper-body compression.
Sperlich is with the Inst of Sport Science, University of Würzburg, Würzburg, Germany. Born is with the Dept of Sport Science, University of Wuppertal, Wuppertal, Germany. Zinner is with the Inst of Training Science and Sport Informatics, German Sport University Cologne, Cologne, Germany. Hauser is with the Swiss Federal Inst of Sports, Magglingen, Switzerland. Holmberg is with the Swedish Winter Sports Research Center, Mid Sweden University, Östersund, Sweden.