TITANIUM-LACED GARMENTS HAVE A POTENTIAL BENEFICIAL ERGONOMIC EFFECT
Rowlands, D. S., Wadsworth, D. P., Rousseau, J., & Walmsley, A. (2010). Uniquely processed titanium permeated garments improve high-intensity run performance and joint range of motion. Presentation 621 at the 2010 Annual Meeting of the American College of Sports Medicine, Baltimore, Maryland; June 2-5.
"Evidence suggests that the wearing of garments and tapes permeated with uniquely processed microscopic titanium particles (Aquatitan) may influence pain perception, muscle and joint stiffness, and physical performance via modulation of the peripheral and/or central nervous system."
This study investigated the effects of Aquatitan-treated garments on performance during and recovery from high-intensity exercise. Trained males (N = 14) performed two five-day trials wearing randomly-allocated titanium-treated and placebo clothing, covering torso, limbs and feet. The exercise protocol comprised a Loughborough Intermittent Shuttle Test (LIST) followed by four days of recovery assessment. Measures were taken of repeated-sprint velocity during the shuttle test, and muscle damage, joint range-of-motion, isometric strength, and running performance during recovery.
Titanium treatment resulted in a likely substantial improvement in the Loughborough Intermittent Shuttle Test sprint velocity of 0.70%. During recovery, the majority of range-of-motion parameters exhibited small- to moderate-sized increases. For example, voluntary leg extension increased 4.0%, hip flexion 1.7%, plantarflexion 4.9%, and shoulder extension and flexion increased 5.8% and 1.4% respectively. Forced-voluntary differences at the hip and shoulder were trivial. Peak velocity in an incremental test was 3.3% faster with titanium treatment 96 hours after the shuttle test. Effects on isometric strength and muscle damage markers were trivial or inconclusive, but some enhancement of psychological state was observed.
Implication. Similar-sized improvements in both voluntary and forced joint range-of-motion suggest that muscle-tendon complex stiffness is reduced by wearing titanium laced garments. A plausible explanation for the benefits is enhancements in energy storage and return. Aquatitan-treated garments demonstrate potential as ergogenic aids and further investigation is required to identify the mechanisms behind these effects.
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