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Adam Grainger, Paul Comfort and Shane Heffernan

Purpose: Partial body cryotherapy (PBC) has been shown to be beneficial for postexercise recovery; however, no study has demonstrated the effectiveness of PBC for recovery following elite rugby union training. Rugby union is a unique sport that involves high-velocity collisions and may induce greater performance decrements than other sports; thus, PBC could be beneficial. The application of PBC in “real world” has rarely been investigated during the competitive phase of a playing season and warranted investigation. Methods: In a counterbalanced sequential research design, professional rugby athletes (n = 18; age 25.4 [4.0] y; training age 7.2 [4.0] y; mass 99.8 [10.6] kg; height 188.3 [6.0] cm) were assigned to a 12-week PBC intervention, washout period (4 wk), and reassessed as their own controls. Self-reported well-being, muscle soreness, sleep quality, and countermovement jump height were assessed before and 40 hours after “real-world” training. Wilcoxon signed-rank tests and Cohen d were used for statistical analysis. Results: No differences were observed between PBC and control conditions (P > .05; d = 0.00–0.14) for well-being (−0.02% [0.08%] vs 0.01% [0.06%]), muscle soreness (−0.01% [0.11%] vs 0.01% [0.16%]), sleep quality (−0.03% [0.14%] vs 0.10% [0.29%]), or countermovement jump height (36.48–36.59 vs 38.13–37.52 cm; P = .54). Conclusions: These results suggest PBC is ineffective for the restoration of selected performance parameters during the performance maintenance phase of the competitive season. To ascertain the appropriation of its use, future investigations should seek to assess the use of cryotherapies at various phases of the elite rugby union competitive season.

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Will Abbott, Callum Brashill, Adam Brett and Tom Clifford

intake of polyphenols during testing. Instead, we encouraged participants to maintain their habitual diet, which was recorded by dietary recall 24 hours following each match. We did this to increase the ecological validity of the findings and to ensure that they were translatable to real-world

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David M. Shaw, Fabrice Merien, Andrea Braakhuis, Daniel Plews, Paul Laursen and Deborah K. Dulson

maintain the anaplerotic flux in the tricarboxylic acid cycle ( Russell & Taegtmeyer, 1991a , 1991b ). However, how this translates to real-world performance is yet to be elucidated. The ingestion of BD also led to symptoms synonymous with low levels of alcohol intoxication within two participants