The effect of superoxygenated water on blood gases, lactate, and aerobic cycling performance

Lars R McNaughton, Steve Kenney, Jason Siegler, Adrian W Midgley, Ric J Lovell, David J Bentley
International Journal of Sports Physiology and Performance 2007, 2 (4): 377-85

CONTEXT: Recently, superoxygenated-water beverages have emerged as a new purported ergogenic substance.

PURPOSE: This study aimed to determine the effects of superoxygenated water on submaximal endurance performance.

METHODS: Eleven active male subjects, VO2max 52.6 +/- 4.8 mL . kg-1 . min-1, height 180.0 +/- 2.0 cm, weight 76.0 +/- 7.0 kg, age 24 +/- 1.0 y (mean +/- SD), completed a 45-min cycle-ergometry exercise test at 70% of their previously predicted maximal power output with a 10-min rest period, followed by a 15-min time trial (TT). Thirty min before the exercise test subjects consumed 15 mL of either superoxygenated water (E) or placebo (P; water mixed with low-chlorine solution). Subjects then completed the test again a week later for the other condition (double-blind, randomized). The physiological variables measured during exercise were VO2, VCO2, respiratory-exchange ratio (RER), VE, PO2, PCO2, blood lactate (bLa-), and heart rate (HR). Mean distance covered and the average power output for the 15-min TT were also measured as performance indicators.

RESULTS: There were no significant differences in VO2, VCO2, RER, VE, bLa-, PO2, and HR (P > .05) during the exercise tests. Neither were there any significant improvements in the total distance covered (P 9.01 +/- 0.74 km vs E 8.96 +/- 0.68 km, P > .05) or the average power output (P 186.7 +/- 35.8 W vs E 179.0 +/- 25.9 W, P > .05) during the 15-min TT.

CONCLUSION: Based on these results the authors conclude that consuming 15 mL of superoxygenated water does not enhance submaximal or maximal TT cycling performance.

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