Improvement of sprint triathlon performance in trained athletes with positive swim pacing

S.S.X. Wu, J.J. Peiffer, Peter Peeling, J. Brisswalter, W.Y. Lau, K. Nosaka, C.R. Abbiss

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    11 Citations (Scopus)


    © 2016 Human Kinetics, Inc.Purpose: To investigate the effect of 3 swim-pacing profiles on subsequent performance during a sprint-distance triathlon (SDT). Methods: Nine competitive/trained male triathletes completed 5 experimental sessions including a graded running exhaustion test, a 750-m swim time trial (STT), and 3 SDTs. The swim times of the 3 SDTs were matched, but pacing was manipulated to induce positive (ie, speed gradually decreasing from 92% to 73% STT), negative (ie, speed gradually increasing from 73% to 92% STT), or even pacing (constant 82.5% STT). The remaining disciplines were completed at a self-selected maximal pace. Speed over the entire triathlon, power output during the cycle discipline, rating of perceived exertion (RPE) for each discipline, and heart rate during the cycle and run were determined. Results: Faster cycle and overall triathlon times were achieved with positive swim pacing (30.5 ± 1.8 and 65.9 ± 4.0 min, respectively), as compared with the even (31.4 ± 1.0 min, P =.018 and 67.7 ± 3.9 min, P =.034, effect size [ES] = 0.46, respectively) and negative (31.8 ± 1.6 min, P =.011 and 67.3 ± 3.7 min, P =.041, ES = 0.36, respectively) pacing. Positive swim pacing elicited a lower RPE (9 ± 2) than negative swim pacing (11 ± 2, P =.014). No differences were observed in the other measured variables. Conclusions: A positive swim pacing may improve overall SDT performance and should be considered by both elite and age-group athletes during racing.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)1024-1028
    Number of pages5
    JournalInternational Journal of Sports Physiology and Performance
    Issue number8
    Publication statusPublished - Nov 2016


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