“Due to the length, intensity, and intermittent nature of a taekwondo match, athletes require well-developed non-oxidative and oxidative energy systems,” the authors of the study said. “Throughout a match, the relative contribution from the anaerobic glycolytic system increases due to the short recovery between rounds. In particular, hydrogen ions may accumulate during a match and potentially impair performance.”
The authors posited, based on previous clinical studies into the mechanisms of both creatine and sodium bicarbonate, that a combination of the two could have synergistic benefits which, through different mechanisms, could improve performance in exercises such as Taekwondo, which involve short bursts of high-intensity activity.
In the study, 40 trained taekwondo athletes with an average age of 21 were randomized to either supplement with 20 grams of sodium bicarbonate and 0.5 grams of creatine daily, one of the two respective ingredients alone in the same quantity, a placebo, or nothing (control group) for five days prior to participation in 3 bouts of a Taekwondo anaerobic intermittent kick test (TAIKT) to determine changes in peak power, mean power, and fatigue index. These results were compared against TAIKT results from before supplementation.
Additionally, blood lactate concentrations (a marker of oxygen delivery to tissues) were measured before, immediately after, and three minutes after TAIKT sessions in the pre- and post-supplementation period.
The authors of the study noted that supplementation with creatine, sodium bicarbonate, and a combination of the two resulted in a greater increase in peak power and mean power in the test, with no changes in the placebo or control groups.
There was a greater increase over time in mean power following supplementation with the two-ingredient combo rather than just one of the two ingredients, the authors noted. Additionally, the creatine-sodium bicarbonate and sodium bicarbonate-only saw significantly lower blood lactate concentrations compared to the creatine-only, placebo, or control groups.
“The current study found improvements in in peak power and mean power compared t the placebo or control groups when creatine and sodium bicarbonate were ingested alone using a Taekwondo specific test. Co-ingestion of creatine with sodium bicarbonate further augmented mean power compared to creatine and sodium bicarbonate alone.
Mike Montemarano has been the Associate Editor of Nutraceuticals World since February 2020. He can be reached at email@example.com.