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The environmental conditions during Tokyo Summer Olympics are expected to be comparable to previous years1 with air temperatures and relative humidity in excess of 30°C and >70%, respectively.2 A previous consensus statement highlighted the main considerations for prevention, recognition and treatment of exertional heat illnesses,3 while the impact of extreme heat on athletic performance is examined elsewhere.4 Cooling strategies applied before and during the exercise in the heat have been shown to help athletes better maintain their performances5 by lowering body heat storage and core body temperature.6 The Tokyo Games have also encouraged the development of wearable technologies that could also be used for prevention, diagnosis and real-time monitoring of skin and core temperature and will be trialled during competition in Tokyo 2020. Here, we aim to highlight the potential application of current novel technologies and the associated ethical dilemmas regarding their effectiveness, the use of athlete biodata and predictive algorithms.
Development of portable cooling technologies
Recently, manufacturers have developed new cooling wearables that have the potential to reduce exertional heatstroke (EHS) risk and to reduce the decline in athletic performance in hot environments, with the most novel summarised in table 1. Here, the focus is not on cooling …
Twitter @BorjaMunizP, @fergusguppy, @ephysiol
Contributors All authors contributed to the writing and approved the final version in accordance with the BJSM instructions to authors.
Funding GA is supported by a fellowship from the Office of Academic Affiliations at the United States Veterans Health Administration.
Competing interests None declared.
Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.