Chocolate Milk as a Post-Exercise Recovery Aid in Division II Collegiate Volleyball Players

in Women in Sport and Physical Activity Journal
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Chocolate milk is an effective recovery beverage following endurance exercise. The purpose of this study was to determine its efficacy, compared to a traditional sports drink, for recovery from intermittent, tournament-style exercise through measures of performance, perception, and rehydration. On 2 days, 7 days apart, female collegiate volleyball players completed an exercise session, rested for 2 h, and repeated the exercise. Participants consumed one of two recovery beverages in a randomized, counterbalanced crossover design. The volume of chocolate milk (CM) was calculated to meet the post-exercise carbohydrate recommendation (1.0 g carbohydrate·kg body weight−1·h−1), and the sports drink (carbohydrate-electrolyte beverage; CE) was matched for volume. The beverages had similar effects on performance and perception variables; no significant differences were noted between treatments. Total urine volume collected over the 2-h recovery period was significantly lower for CM than CE (CM: M = 217, SD = 115 ml vs. CE: M = 412, SD = 245 ml; Z = 2.60, p = .009; r = −.58), and when total fluid consumed during recovery was compared to urine output as a percent retained, a significant difference was seen between CM and CE (CM: 79.7% vs. CE: 61.4%; t[9] = −3.34, p = .009; d = 1.06). Thus, it was concluded that chocolate milk is as effective as a traditional sports drink for females recovering from intermittent exercise with a short (2 h) recovery period, and that chocolate milk may be more beneficial than a sports drink for achieving rehydration post-exercise.

The authors are with the Dept. of Nutrition Exercise & Health Sciences, Central Washington University, Ellensburg, WA.

Dow (childersk@cwu.edu) is corresponding author.
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