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Infographic. Keep it cool and beat the heat: cooling strategies for exercise in hot and humid conditions
  1. Coen C W G Bongers,
  2. Johannus Q de Korte,
  3. Thijs Eijsvogels
  1. Radboud Institute for Health Sciences, Department of Physiology, Radboud university medical center, Nijmegen, The Netherlands
  1. Correspondence to Dr Coen C W G Bongers, Radboud Institute for Health Sciences, Department of Physiology, Radboud university medical center, Nijmegen 6500, The Netherlands; coen.bongers{at}

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Environmental conditions for the upcoming Tokyo Summer Olympics (32th Olympiad) are expected to be extremely challenging for athletes.1 The high ambient temperature, radiant temperature and absolute humidity, in combination with the urbanisation and heat storage in crowded stadiums, will limit the capability of athletes to dissipate the exercise-induced heat production. Significant elevations of core temperature may occur, leading to an increased risk to develop heat-related disorders and a substantial deterioration of exercise performance. Therefore, application of cooling strategies prior to (precooling) or during exercise (percooling) is highly recommended. In this infographic, we will summarise the latest scientific insights on the effectiveness of cooling strategies.

Cooling strategies are known to improve exercise performance in the heat, such as time trial performance, time to exhaustion and intermittent sprint exercise,2 due to reductions in …

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  • Twitter @BongersCoen, @ThijsEijsvogels

  • Contributors CCWGB created the infographic, CCWGB and JQdK wrote the manuscript, and all authors revised both the infographic and the manuscript.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.