Ergogenics: Caffeine – Part Two

coffeeThe previous article discussing the ergogenic effect of two different dosing protocols of caffeine involved looking at men and leg performance. This update looks at the upper body strength of women, specifically the bench press. For those interested, the full study can be found online for free here.

This study published in the JISSN did not want to assess the difference on performance of different caffeine doses, the researchers just wanted to assess if there was any difference at all using a 6mg/kg dose. Much like the study in the previous update, fifteen participants were used. The women involved were all experienced with resistance training, which I find a significant factor. The women attended three sessions, the first to establish baseline, and then two more where they were either given the caffeine or a placebo in random fashion sixty minutes before activity.


As the table above shows, the women noted an increase in their bench press maximum, but noticed no difference in what the researchers referred to here as muscular endurance. This was their ability to press sub-maximal loads in the region of 60% of their one rep max lifts. Or in other words, caffeine helped them push themselves to their limits, but offered no benefit for a more casual set.

Like I concluded in the previous article, I personally find this dose quite high, so if you plan to try it, make sure you have some sort of basic caffeine tolerance built up before embarking on such a large acute intake.

Source: Goldstein E, Jacobs PL, Whitehurst M, Penhollow T, Antonio J. Caffeine enhances upper body strength in resistance-trained women. J Int Soc Sports Nutr. 2010 May 14;7:18.

About the Author

Matt Cahill has worked extensively in the nutritional supplement field, and is the former CEO of Designer Supplements. During his time in the field has researched and developed prohormones, testosterone boosters, and other related compounds, both for his own company and others.