THE EFFECTS OF BETWEEN-SET INTERVENTIONS ON PERFORMANCE
Cardiff Metropolitan University
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Background – Power restoration between sets of high intensity exercise is an important factor in improving performance. Many interventions, such as sports massage and active recovery, have been utilised to enhance muscle recovery and performance. There are very few published articles which have investigated, and compared, these interventions when applied between sets of exercise. Aim – The aim of this study was to compare the effects of sports massage and active recovery on between-set recovery during maximal power training. Method – Eight (n = 8) competitive male athletes volunteered to participate in this study. Three sets of ten squat jumps were performed with a recovery intervention (passive rest, active recovery or sports massage) applied in-between each set. Active recovery consisted of 10 minutes of jogging, maintaining a heart rate ranging between 60% – 65% of maximum heart rate. Massage was applied to the quadriceps muscle group (anterior part of thigh) for 10 minutes (5 minutes on each leg). The study used a crossover design and therefore the participants experienced each intervention and acted as their own control. Results – A repeated-measures ANOVA revealed that there was no significant difference in fatigue decrement, between the first and second squat jump set, when sports massage and active recovery was applied (P > 0.05). No significant difference in fatigue decrement was found, with the use of sports massage and active recovery, between set 2 and 3 (P > 0.05). There was also no significant difference in fatigue decrement between set 1 and 3 when massage was applied (P > 0.05). However, there was a significant reduction in fatigue decrement between set 1 and 3 when active recovery was undertaken (P < 0.05). Conclusion – The present findings suggested that massage had no significant effect on reducing fatigue or improving performance when applied between sets of exercise. Active recovery was the superior modality and had a positive influence on fatigue decrement and recovery enhancement. Further research is required to support the use of sports massage as a means of enhancing muscle recovery and power restoration.
DEGREE OF BACHELOR OF SCIENCE (HONOURS) SPORT CONDITIONING, REHABILITATION AND MASSAGE
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