University of Hertfordshire

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The effect of different durations of carbohydrate mouth rinse on cycling performance

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


  • Jonathan Sinclair
  • Lindsay Bottoms
  • Ciaran Flynn
  • Eoin Bradley
  • Gareth Alexander
  • Sean McCullagh
  • Thomas Finn
  • Howard Thomas Hurst
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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)259-64
Number of pages6
JournalEuropean Journal of Sport Science
Early online date11 Apr 2013
Publication statusPublished - 2014


Carbohydrate (CHO) mouth rinse has been shown to improve time trial performance. Although the exact mechanism remains un-established, research postulates that there are oral cavity receptors which increase neural drive. Increasing the duration of the mouth rinse could potentially increase stimulation of these receptors. The aim of the current investigation was to determine whether the duration of mouth rinse with 6.4% CHO affected 30-min self-selected cycling performance. Eleven male participants (age =24.1±3.9 years) performed three 30-min self-paced trials. On one occasion water was given as a mouth rinse for 5 s without being ingested placebo (PLA), on the other two occasions a 6.4% CHO solution was given for 5 and 10 s. Distance cycled, heart rate, ratings of perceived exertion, cadence, speed and power were recorded throughout all trials. The main findings were that distance cycled during the 10-s mouth rinse trial (20.4±2.3 km) was significantly greater compared to the PLA trial (19.2±2.2 km; P<0.01). There was no difference between the 5- and 10-s trials (P=0.15). However, 10 out of 11 participants cycled further during the 5-s trial compared to PLA, and eight cycled further during the 10-s trial compared to the 5 s. In conclusion, although there was an improvement in distance cycled with the 5-s mouth rinse compared to the PLA it was only significant with 10 s suggesting a dose response to the duration of mouth rinse.

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