Contrast Therapy; Muscle Glycogen; Muscle Recovery
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Contrast with compression (CwC) therapy is commonly used by athletes to reduce pain and swelling and improve the rate of recovery of strength after intense exercise. Muscle glycogen is an important energy source for many athletes and is often a rate limiting factor of performance in prolonged high intensity sports. It is presently unknown if CwC affects the rate of muscle glycogen recovery after exercise. PURPOSE: The purpose of this study was to use a recently developed CwC device to determine if its use after an intense bout of resistance exercise affects the rate of intramuscular glycogen recovery. METHODS: The study design was a repeated measures within subject design in which 10 men (Age: 21.5 ± 2.7 y; Height: 181.3 ± 8.1 cm; Mass: 87.7 ± 19.2 kg) completed two subsequent single-arm elbow flexor workouts on an isokinetic dynamometer. After the exercise, each participant completed either three 10 min bouts of CwC therapy immediately, 24 hr and 48 hr after the exercise or no therapy (CON). Each participant’s diet was recorded using the ASA24 diet record system for each day. Intramuscular glycogen was measured from transverse ultrasound images before and immediately after the exercise as well as 1, 24, 48 and 72 hrs after the exercise.At each time point, three images were taken and analyzed using ImageJ software. Comparisons were made over time and between interventions (CwC vs. CON) using a 2 x 6 (condition by time) mixed model ANOVA with Bonferroni post-hoc test (p