Coffee, Caffeine and Sports Performance Roundtable – audio clips

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From enhancing endurance to aiding quick recovery, caffeine can play a role in improving sports performance, as explained by experts in the field of sports science and nutrition during an ISIC roundtable on coffee, caffeine and sports performance held in July 2015. Please find below some key audio clips, recorded via conference call during the virtual roundtable, summarising the topic areas presented. To read the full roundtable report, click here and to view the presentation slide deck, click here.

The exact impact of caffeine may be affected by the dosage consumed, and by the type of physical activity being undertaken. Professor Greg Whyte OBE, a former Olympian and sports scientist summarised the latest research relating to caffeine consumption and sports performance. Click below to hear Prof. Whyte discuss optimal dosage:


Whether an elite or recreational athlete, caffeine consumption will similarly impact the body. Click below to hear Prof. Whyte discuss physiology:


In endurance sports lasting more than five minutes such as running, cycling and rowing, there is a plethora of evidence suggesting that caffeine can improve performance. In anaerobic activity which takes place in short bursts, such as sprinting, there is some evidence to suggest an improvement when sprints lasting more than one minute are repeated. Click below to hear Prof. Whyte’s conclusion of the known research:


Dr Javier Gonzalez, a lecturer in Human and Applied Physiology at the University of Bath, UK shared the proposed mechanisms behind caffeine’s effect on sports performance. It is suggested that caffeine affects endurance performance largely through its antagonist effect on the adenosine receptors in the brain. Click below to hear Dr Gonzalez explain how this occurs:


It is often suggested that coffee causes dehydration and its consumption should be avoided or significantly reduced to maintain fluid balance. Dr Sophie Killer presented the results of her recent study which showed that, in fact, when consumed in moderation by caffeine habituated males, coffee provides similar hydrating qualities to water. Click below to hear Dr Killer’s conclusion:


Click below hear Prof. Whyte summarise the findings presented at the roundtable:


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