Performance, muscle damage, and inflammatory responses to repeated high-intensity exercise following a 40-min nap

Omar Boukhris, Khaled Trabelsi, Achraf Ammar, Hsen Hsouna, Raouf Abdessalem, Stefan Altmann, Cain C.T. Clark, Mouna Turki, Fatma Ayadi, Florian Engel, Hamdi Chtourou

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    7 Citations (Scopus)


    The purpose of this study was to examine the effect of a 40-min nap opportunity (N40) on performance during, markers of muscle damage and inflammation, and the perception of fatigue and recovery, in response to a 5-m shuttle run test (5msrt). Fifteen male amateur athletes performed the 5msrt under two conditions: N40 and no-nap condition (NN). Blood biomarkers were collected at rest and after the 5msrt to measure muscle damage (i.e., creatinine kinase (CK), lactate dehydrogenase (LDH), aspartate aminotransferase (ASAT), and alanine aminotransferase (ALAT)) and inflammation (i.e., C-reactive protein (CRP)). RPE was determined immediately after each repetition of the test and PRS and DOMS were determined 5 min, thereafter. Compared to NN, N40 improved the highest distance (p<0.001, Δ=+7.9%) and the total distance (p<0.001, Δ=+7.2%) attained during the 5msrt. Pre and post the 5msrt, participants presented lower muscle damage (i.e., CK, LDH, ASAT and ALAT) and inflammation (i.e., CRP) (p<0.05) values in the N40 compared to NN. Concerning RPE, DOMS, and PRS, there was a positive effect in the N40 vs. NN (p<0.01). N40 represents an effective method for improving repeated high intensity short-term maximal performance, PRS, and associated muscle damage and inflammation, and reducing RPE and DOMS.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)398-415
    Number of pages18
    JournalResearch in Sports Medicine
    Issue number4
    Early online date19 Oct 2021
    Publication statusPublished - 4 Jul 2023

    Bibliographical note

    Publisher Copyright:
    © 2021 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group.


    • inflammation
    • muscle fatigue
    • Nap
    • physical performances
    • sports

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
    • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation


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