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THERMAL RESPONSES TO SWIMMING: THE INFLUENCE OF BODYSUITS

Taimura, A1; Matsunami, M1; Sugawara, M1

Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise: May 2003 - Volume 35 - Issue 5 - p S29
A-15O Free Communication/Poster Heat Stress and Dehydration

1Faculty of Environmental Studies, Nagasaki Univ., Beppu Women's Junior College, Oita, and Faculty of Education, Nagasaki Univ., Nagasaki 852-8521, Japan

e-mail: taimura@net.nagasaki-u.ac.jp

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PURPOSE

The purpose of this study was to clarify the thermal effect of wearing the new long type swimsuits (BODYSUITS) during prolonged swimming.

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METHODS

We tried to measure the skin temperature during swimming using a new small temperature logger. The logger which has three functions (sensor, 2040 data point memory, built-in power: Temperature logger 3650, HIOKI, Japan). The subjects were 12 male college competitive swimmers aged 20.2 +±- 1.3 yr, height 174.0 +±- 6.4 cm, body weight 69.1 +±- 7.7 kg, %Fat 17.7 ±- 3.1 %. All the subjects trained regularly for 2–3 hours a day, 5–7 times a week. The subjects swam 1500 m at sub-maximum effort in a front crawl stroke with two types of competitive swimsuits. The temperature loggers were attached to the swimmer's calf, thigh, abdomen, chest, and forearm. Those skin temperatures were measured throughout the swim at one minute intervals. Body temperature (oral: Tb), rating of perceived exertion (RPE), and perceived thermal sensation of the head (TSH) and body (TSB) were measured on completion of the swim.

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RESULTS

There were no significant differences in Tb (37.4 ±- 0.2, 37.2 ±- 0.2 °C) for the BODYSUITS and regular swimsuits, respectively. The mean skin temperatures during the swim for the BODYSUITS and regular swimsuits were 33.0 ±- 0.38 and 32.6 ±- 0.35 °C, respectively (p < 0.05). There were significant differences in TSB(6.5 ±- 0.8, 5.6 ±- 0.2) and TSH(7.1 ±- 0.3, 5.9 ±- 0.6) for the BODYSUITS and regular swimsuits, respectively (p < 0.05).

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CONCLUSION

The thermal responses to swimming wearing the BODYSUITS were significantly higher than wearing the regular swimsuits. Therefore, swimmers might be required to pay more attention to the consequences of wearing the BODYSUITS during prolonged/high intensity swimming in a warm water environment.

©2003The American College of Sports Medicine