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The purpose of this paper was to conduct a systematic review and a meta-analysis of studies examining the acute eff ects of caff eine ingestion on measures of rowing performance. Crossover and placebo-controlled experiments that investigated the eff ects of caff eine ingestion on measures of rowing performance were included. The PEDro checklist was used to assess the methodological quality of the included studies. Seven studies of good and excellent methodological quality were included. None of the included studies examined on-water rowing. The majority of studies that were included in the meta-analysis used a 2000m rowing distance with only one using 1000m distance. Results of the main meta-analysis indicated that ca ffeine enhances performance on a rowing ergometer compared to placebo with a mean di erence of 􀀀4.1 s (95% confidence interval (CI): 􀀀6.4, 􀀀1.8 s). These values remained consistent in the analysis in which the study that used a 1000m distance was excluded (mean di erence: 􀀀4.3 s; 95% CI: 􀀀6.9, 􀀀1.8 s). We also found a significant increase in mean power (mean difference: 5.7W; 95% CI: 2.1, 9.3 W) and minute ventilation (mean diff erence: 3.4 L/min; 95% CI: 1.7, 5.1 L/min) following caff eine ingestion. No significant differences between caff eine and placebo were found for the rating of perceived exertion, oxygen consumption, respiratory exchange ratio, and heart rate. This meta-analysis found that acute ca ffeine ingestion improves 2000m rowing ergometer performance by ~4 s. Our results support the use of caff eine pre-exercise as an ergogenic aid for rowing performance.


This work was originally published in Nutrients, available at doi:10.3390/nu12020434

This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license



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