The influence of ice slushy on voluntary contraction force following exercise-induced hyperthermia
This study aimed to investigate the effect of exercise-induced hyperthermia on central fatigue and force decline in exercised and nonexercised muscles and whether ingestion of ice slushy (ICE) ameliorates fatigue. Eight participants (5 males, 3 females) completed 45 s maximal voluntary isometric contractions (MVIC) with elbow flexors and knee extensors at baseline and following an exercise-induced rectal temperature (Trec) of 39.3 ± 0.2 °C. Percutaneous electrical muscle stimulation was superimposed at 15, 30 and 44 s during MVICs to assess muscle activation. To increase Trec to 39.3 °C, participants cycled at 60% maximum power output for 42 ± 11 min in 40 °C and 50% relative humidity. Immediately prior to each MVIC, participants consumed 50 g of ICE (-1 °C) or thermoneutral drink (38 °C, CON) made from 7.4% carbohydrate beverage. Participants consumed water (19 °C) during exercise to prevent hypohydration. Voluntary muscle force production and activation in both muscle groups were unchanged at Trec 39.3 °C with ICE (knee extensors: 209 ± 152 N) versus CON (knee extensors: 255 ± 157 N, p = 0.19). At Trec 39.3 °C, quadriceps mean force (232 ± 151 N) decreased versus baseline (302 ± 180 N, p < 0.001) and mean voluntary activation was also decreased (by 15% ± 11%, p < 0.001). Elbow flexor mean force decreased from 179 ± 67 N to 148 ± 65 N when Trec was increased to 39.3 °C (p < 0.001) but mean voluntary activation was not reduced at 39.3 °C (5% ± 25%, p = 0.79). After exercise-induced hyperthermia, ICE had no effect on voluntary activation or force production; however, both were reduced from baseline in the exercised muscle group. Peripheral fatigue was greater than the central component and limited the ability of an intervention designed to alter central fatigue.