Physiological aids

Blood doping


Volume of blood removed from athlete 4 weeks prior to competition, body naturally replenishes lost blood and a couple of hours prior to the event the RBCs are reinfused in saline solution 

Endurance performers eg. Tour de France cyclists 

+= increased RBC and Hb count

Increased O2 transport and aerobic capacity

Increased intensity and duration of performance before fatigue

-= increased blood viscosity 

Decreased cardiac output

Increased risk of blood clots and heart failure

Risk of transfusion infections eg. HIV

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Intermittent hypoxic training (IHT)


Athletes live at sea level but train under hypoxic conditions 

Interval training- mask supplying low pO2 removed in recovery interval 

Edurance athletes eg. marathon runners 

+= acclimitisation for events at altitude 

Increased RBC, Hb and oxygen-carrying capacity

Increased mitochondria and buffering capacity, delaying OBLA

-= any benefit quickly lost when IHT stops

May lose motivation and disrupt training patterns

Decrease immune function and increase risk of infection


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Cooling aids


Pre-event= eg. ice vests used to reduce core body temp to reduce thermal strain and CV drift

Injury treatment= eg. ice packs reducing pain and swelling. Nerve endings numbed and arterioles vasoconstrict to reduce blood flow, PRICE 

Post-event= eg. ice baths speed up recovery by reducing DOMs, blood vessels constrict, removing waste and lactic acid from muscle. After bath, vessels dilate, flushing muscle with nutrient rich oxygenated blood flow. 

+= reduced core body temp

Decreased sweating, dehydration and early fatigue 

Decreased injury pain and swelling 

Increased speed of recovery and repair 

Decreased DOMs

-= ice burns and pain 

Hide/complicate injury 

Chest pain and reduced efficiency in elderly 

Dangerous for hypetensives/ heart conditions- if used in chest area 

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