Effects of caffeine and carbohydrate mouth rinses on repeated sprint performance

C.M. Beaven, P. Maulder, A. Pooley, L.P. Kilduff, C. Cook

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112 Citations (Scopus)


Our purpose was to examine the effectiveness of carbohydrate and caffeine mouth rinses in enhancing repeated sprint ability. Previously, studies have shown that a carbohydrate mouth rinse (without ingestion) has beneficial effects on endurance performance that are related to changes in brain activity. Caffeine ingestion has also demonstrated positive effects on sprint performance. However, the effects of carbohydrate or caffeine mouth rinses on intermittent sprints have not been examined previously. Twelve males performed 5 × 6-s sprints interspersed with 24 s of active recovery on a cycle ergometer. Twenty-five milliliters of either a noncaloric placebo, a 6% glucose, or a 1.2% caffeine solution was rinsed in the mouth for 5 s prior to each sprint in a double-blinded and balanced cross-over design. Postexercise maximal heart rate and perceived exertion were recorded, along with power measures. A second experiment compared a combined caffeine-carbohydrate rinse with carbohydrate only. Compared with the placebo mouth rinse, carbohydrate substantially increased peak power in sprint 1 (22.1 ± 19.5 W; Cohen's effect size (ES), 0.81), and both caffeine (26.9 ± 26.9 W; ES, 0.71) and carbohydrate (39.1 ± 25.8 W; ES, 1.08) improved mean power in sprint 1. Experiment 2 demonstrated that a combination of caffeine and carbohydrate improved sprint 1 power production compared with carbohydrate alone (36.0 ± 37.3 W; ES, 0.81). We conclude that carbohydrate and (or) caffeine mouth rinses may rapidly enhance power production, which could have benefits for specific short sprint exercise performance. The ability of a mouth-rinse intervention to rapidly improve maximal exercise performance in the absence of fatigue suggests a central mechanism.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)633-637
Number of pages5
JournalApplied Physiology, Nutrition and Metabolism
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2013
Externally publishedYes


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