Repeated sprint performance is determined by explosive production of power, as well as rapid recovery between successive sprints, and there is evidence that compression garments and sports taping can improve both of these factors.
In each of two sub-studies, female athletes performed two sets of 30 30-m sprints (one sprint per minute), one set wearing compression garment with adhesive silicone stripes (CGSS) intended to mimic taping and the other with normal clothing, in randomized order. Sub-study 1 (n = 12) focused on cardio-respiratory, metabolic, hemodynamic and perceptual responses, while neuronal and biomechanical parameters were examined in sub-study 2 (n = 12).
In both sub-studies the CGSS improved repeated sprint performance during the final 10 sprints (best P < 0.01, d = 0.61). None of the cardio-respiratory or metabolic variables monitored were altered by wearing this garment (best P = 0.06, d = 0.71). Also during the final 10 sprints, rating of perceived exertion by the upper leg muscles was reduced (P = 0.01, d = 1.1), step length increased (P = 0.01, d = 0.91) and activation of the m. rectus femoris elevated (P = 0.01, d = 1.24), while the hip flexion angle was lowered throughout the protocol (best P < 0.01, d = 2.28) and step frequency (best P = 0.34, d = 0.2) remained unaltered.
Although the physiological parameters monitored were unchanged, the CGSS appears to improve performance during 30 30-m repeated sprints by reducing perceived exertion and altering running technique.
2014. Vol. 6, no 21