caffeine ergogenic Q & A Sports Performance The Training Edge Nutrition performance

Trainer Q&A: Can caffeine really boost sports performance?

National Academy of Sports Medicine
National Academy of Sports Medicine

facebook_1113Caffeine Boost

A: Yes. Research shows that caffeine is ergogenic—it targets the brain and nervous system to resist fatigue during a workout. The key is using it correctly and not overdoing it, which can lead to jitters, anxiety, a racing heart, and trouble sleeping at night.

The performance benefits max out at 3 milligrams of caffeine per kilogram (2.2 pounds) of body weight. That means a 150-pound person could have around 200 milligrams of caffeine before or during activity to postpone fatigue. (That’s about the amount in a 16-ounce coffee from a cafe, or two small cups of homemade, regular-strength coffee or tea.) Not everyone responds the same way, so test lesser amounts first.

Also factor in any earlier intake. Caffeine peaks in the bloodstream in 10 to 30 minutes, then is reduced by half within four hours (also keep in mind that it’s a mild diuretic). If you had a morning coffee, you may only need a little bit to get a boost without side effects.

Expert: Jennifer Ketterly, MS, RD, CSSD, LD, is the director of sports nutrition at the University of Georgia. She played varsity basketball at Cornell University as an undergraduate.

NASM's The Training Edge, Nov/Dec 2014


Tags: caffeine Tags: ergogenic Tags: Q & A Tags: Sports Performance Tags: The Training Edge Tags: Nutrition Tags: performance

The Author

National Academy of Sports Medicine

National Academy of Sports Medicine

Since 1987 the National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM) has been the global leader in delivering evidence-based certifications and advanced specializations to health and fitness professionals. Our products and services are scientifically and clinically proven. They are revered and utilized by leading brands and programs around the world and have launched thousands of successful careers.