I realised I have not written much on this blog since our activities started at Aspire Academy. This is clearly a sign that we have been very busy at work but also that the only time I had to write it has been spent writing scientific work. As a department we are doing very well not only because our service provision improves on a daily basis but also because we are starting to produce a lot of applied scientific papers which I hope can help the coaching and sports science community Worldwide in improving the support to athletes. We have quite a good number of articles already published, a few in press and many submitted which means that by the end of 2015 we might be able to make a significant contribution to our willingness to learn more and share the learning.
The most recent effort is an extensive systematic review and meta-analysis on the topic of cold baths in adolescent athletes. This was triggered by the fact that many coaches and sports scientists working with young athletes tend to replicate processes and procedures observed in senior athletes without questioning appropriateness and effectiveness. Our conclusions are pretty clear: there is no evidence of benefits of such interventions in adolescent athletes and there are a lot of unanswered questions when it comes to the implications for such recovery practice to negatively affect training adaptations. So as usual, there is a need for more and better studies to understand this with all the limitations of conducting studies in a youth population.
The article is free and completely accessible online. The abstract is below.
If you are interested in reading it, just click here and download the PDF.