Irreparable damage to sport

By Iñigo Mujika on April 6th 2013
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In the past few weeks you have heard me say again and again that doping has no place in the new cycling, that sport without doping is not a utopia, etc.

Unfortunately, there are still some who do not seem to understand that that game is over, that it is not possible to continue to play with the credibility of sport, athletes and those of us who try in a clean and honest way to help them give the best of themselves in training and competition.

It hurts me to be in the need to inform you that one of the riders hired by the Euskaltel Euskadi team this season is one of these characters who don’t understand what we are talking about. While he had the dignity to admit that the decision to dope was exclusively his own the damage inflicted on those of us who are part of this team (riders, technical and support staff, sponsors, etc.) is irreparable.

Press release from the team.

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Interview on Euskal Telebista (Basque TV)

By Iñigo Mujika on March 29th 2013

Interview on  Euskal Telebista (Basque TV), on March 27, 2013 (in Spanish):

New book: “Recovery for Performance in Sport”

By Iñigo Mujika on March 5th 2013

Recovery for Performance in Sport

I am happy to announce the publication of a new book, “Recovery for Performance in Sport”, that I have edited alongside my colleague and good friend Christophe Hausswirth, Senior Physiologist at the French Institut National du Sport, de l’Expertise et de la Performance (INSEP) since 1995.

The book contains 17 chapters written by more than 30 international experts and provides the most comprehensive and up-to-date scientific and practical information about recovery in sport. In addition, readers can find case studies describing recovery strategies that have been used successfully by world-class sport scientists, coaches and athletes. These case studies complement nicely the scientific information contained in the book and bring such information to the context of real life training and competition situations.

You can find additional information on Recovery for Performance in Sport here.

A new time for cycling

By Iñigo Mujika on February 20th 2013
The sun, making its way through the clouds (Photo: Inigo Mujika)

The sun, making its way through the clouds (Photo: Inigo Mujika)

I guess many of you are as tired as I am of hearing about doping in sport, but it is the reality that we live these days and we cannot put our heads under the ground and pretend such issue does not exist. Here is part of an interview I did recently for a German publication. With this interview, and especially with my work, I hope to make my contribution towards a new time for cycling and sport in general.

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Bosquet L, Berryman N, Dupuy O, Mekary S, Arvisais D, Bherer L, Mujika I.

Scandinavian Journal of Medicine & Science in Sports. doi: 10.1111/sms.12047

The purpose of this study was to assess the effect of resistance training cessation on strength performance through a meta-analysis. Seven databases were searched from which 103 of 284 potential studies met inclusion criteria. Training status, sex, age, and the duration of training cessation were used as moderators. Standardized mean difference (SMD) in muscular performance was calculated and weighted by the inverse of variance to calculate an overall effect and its 95% confidence interval (CI). Results indicated a detrimental effect of resistance training cessation on all components of muscular performance: [submaximal strength; SMD (95% CI) = -0.62 (-0.80 to -0.45), P <  0.01], [maximal force; SMD (95% CI) = -0.46 (-0.54 to -0.37), P < 0.01], [maximal power; SMD (95% CI) = -0.20 (-0.28 to -0.13), P < 0.01]. A dose-response relationship between the amplitude of SMD and the duration of training cessation was identified. The effect of resistance training cessation was found to be larger in older people (> 65 years old). The effect was also larger in inactive people for maximal force and maximal power when compared with recreational athletes. Resistance training cessation decreases all components of muscular strength. The magnitude of the effect differs according to training status, age or the duration of training cessation.

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Ten years ago

By Iñigo Mujika on January 24th 2013
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With the AUS wheelchair basketball team, 2004.

With the AUS wheelchair basketball team, 2004.

October 2002. I receive an e-mail from David Martin, Senior Physiologist at the Australian Institute of Sport: “We are advertising a two-year Senior Physiologist position at the AIS. Would you be remotely interested?”

My answer: “I could be interested. Please, tell me more about it.”

That night I went to see a film (looking at the dates, it could have been Roman Polanski’s “The Pianist”, Cédric Klapisch’s “L’Auberge Espagnole” or Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne’s “Le Fils”), and when I got home I had a message from David in my answering machine, telling me about the position, the Department of Physiology, the colleagues I would be working with, the projects leading up to the Athens 2004 Olympic Games, etc. I was being offered a dream job in the world’s best “medal factory”, the opportunity to work side by side with some of the world’s best sport scientists and athletes in preparation for the Olympic Games, and I was going to get paid for it. Who could have resisted?

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Elementary Anatomy and Physiology (V)

By Iñigo Mujika on January 7th 2013
Swamps of Louisiana (Photo: Iñigo Mujika)

Swamps of Louisiana (Photo: Iñigo Mujika)

Chapter 27 of my book Endurance Training – Science and Practice is dedicated to “Unhealthy air and water environments: effects on endurance training and competition”. The chapter was written by my friend and colleague Randy Wilber, Senior Sport Physiologist at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, where the air quality is usually really good.

Randy’s chapter provides the most recent information on the challenges that the endurance athlete faces when training and competing in an air-polluted environment, but the importance of breathing clean air for health has been known for a very long time. Here are several extracts from Hitchcock & Hitchcock’ 1860 book Elementary Anatomy and Physiology for Colleges, Academies and Other Schools.

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