Table 1

Summary of precooling studies and related methods and outcomes

StudyPrecooling methodExercise protocolPre-exercise TcΔTc at end exerciseAmbient conditionsOutcome/conclusions
*Oesophageal temperature; †rectal temperature.
Tc, Core temperature; ΔTc, change in core temperature; rh, relative humidity.
Bergh & Ekblom6Swimming water temperature 13–15°CArm & leg exercise to exhaustion within 5–8 min34.9°C*Not reported20–22°CLowering Tc reduced physical performance
Cotter et al11Ice vest with and without thigh cooling + cold air 3°C20 min cycling at 65% Vo2peak + 15 min work performance (35 min total exercise)36.8°C*†1.7°C33°CPrecooling reduced physiological and psychphysical strain and increased endurance performance
Booth et al2Water immersion 23–24°C30 min self paced treadmill running36.7°C†2.2°C31.6°C, 60% rhIncreased distance run in 30 min by 304 m (+ 4%).
Booth et al10Water immersion 24°C35 min cycling at 60% Vo2peak36.4°C*1.9°C34.9°C, 46.4% rhPrecooling had limited effect on muscle metabolism
Kay et al9Water immersion 24°C30 min cycling time trial0°C†1.0°C31.4°C, 60.2% rhPrecooling the skin alone increased distance cycled by 0.9 km and increased rate of heat storage
Lee & Haymes8Cold air 5°CRunning at 82% Vo2max to exhaustion0.37°C†1.5°C24°C, 51–52% rhPrecooling increased exercise endurance and rate of heat storage
Schmidt & Brück4Cold air 0°CCycling with increasing workload to exhaustion36.4°C*0.6°C18°CIncreased time to exhaustion and work performed
Hessemer et al7Cold air 0°C60 min work rate test36.4°C*0.4°C18°CIncreased work rate following precooling
Olschewski & Brück3Cold air 0°CCycling with increasing workload to exhaustion36.9°C*0.4°C18°C, 50% rhIncreased endurance time following precooling
González-Alonso et al3430 min water immersionCycling at 60% Vo2max to exhaustion35.9°C*4.2°C40°C, 19% rhPerformance time increased. Exercise terminating at identical Tc to control
Marsh & Sleivert2930 min water immersion70 second cycling power test36.4°C†0.1°C29°C, 80% rhMean 70 second power output increased following precooling by 2.7%
Kruk et al20Cold air 5°CCycling at 50% Vo2max for 30 min37.0°C†0.5°C5°CPrecooling reduced exercise capacity in a cold environment.