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Samenvatting
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Het eerste jaar van het Thermo Tokyo: Beat the Heat project heeft in het teken gestaan van dataverzameling. Alle kennisinstellingen (Radboudumc, HAN, VU, TU Delft) hebben diverse metingen verricht, zowel in het veld als in het lab. Daarnaast zijn de onderzoeksprotocollen ontwikkeld in nauwe samenwerking met NOC*NSF en sportcentrum Papendal. Er zijn veel testen uitgevoerd in de klimaatkamer op Papendal. Er zijn 2 bijeenkomsten met alle eindgebruikers georganiseerd, en daarnaast zijn er nog diverse 1 op 1 sessies ingepland. Het project loopt voorspoedig en op schema.

Resultaten
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Het eerste jaar van het Thermo Tokyo: Beat the Heat project heeft in het teken gestaan van dataverzameling. Zo hebben reeds 100 topsporters (zowel Olympisch als Paralympisch) een tweetal inspanningstesten in de klimaatkamer ondergaan en zijn er na afloop uitgebreide metingen van lichaamskarakteristieken verricht. Deze metingen zullen inzicht geven in de regulatie van lichaamstemperatuur en prestatie tijdens inspanning in de hitte. Daarnaast is er in een groep van 27 amateursporters een warmte-gewenning studie uitgevoerd om te kijken hoe snel het lichaam zich aanpast aan sporten in de hitte, hoe lang deze voordelen beschikbaar blijven, en welke strategieën kunnen worden ingezet om het hitte-geheugen weer snel te activeren. Tot slot zijn enkele prototypes ontwikkeld van innovatieve koelende kledingstukken die ingezet kunnen worden bij topsporters.

Samenvatting van de aanvraag

Samenvatting
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The 2020 Summer Olympics and Paralympics will be held in the midst of Tokyo’s summer, characterized by hot (>30°C) and humid (>75% relative humidity; RH) climatic conditions: this will result in the most challenging environmental conditions ever observed in the modern history of the Olympic and Paralympic Games. Apart from the external thermoregulatory burden (i.e. solar radiation, ambient temperature and humidity), exercise is another important source of heat production. The combination of environmental heat stress and exercise-induced heat production will exceed the body’s heat dissipating capabilities, resulting in profound core body temperature (CBT) elevations and an associated loss of exercise performance. The purpose of this multidisciplinary project is to minimize the loss of performance and to facilitate safe and maximal exercise performance in hot and humid climatic conditions.

 

For this purpose, 3 universities (Radboudumc, Vrije Universiteit, Delft University of Technology), 1 university of applied sciences (HAN), 4 companies (myTemp, Sizing Science, Inuteq, Magic Marine) 7 sports organizations (NOC*NSF, KNZB, KNWU, NTB, KNHB, Atletiekunie, Watersportverbond) and 4 national Sportinnovator centers (Papendal / Topsport Expertise & Innovation Centre Limburg / Sailing Innovation Center / TUD) jointly expressed the objective to allow safe and optimal performance for Olympic and Paralympic athletes exercising in the heat. To achieve this goal, we propose 4 inter-related work-packages that build on the latest insights from science, technology and sports practice. We will test recently developed innovative products in lab and field conditions and perform novel scientific studies to allow athletes to ‘beat the heat’.

 

Work package 1 aims to assess individual thermoregulatory responses of Olympic/Paralympic qualifiers in moderate versus hot environmental conditions in laboratory and field conditions. These studies inform us on the vulnerability of an individual athlete for performance loss and exertional hyperthermia during exercise in the heat. The personal temperature profile allow us to advise the athlete about their optimal preparation for Tokyo 2020 using (re-)acclimation (WP-3) and cooling (WP-4) strategies.

 

Work package 2 utilizes data science and detailed anthropometric measures to identify subject characteristics that contribute to performance loss and the development of exertional hyperthermia during exercise in the heat. The novel personal performance loss predictor model can be adjusted to the latest local weather forecast to allow athletes, coaches and medical staff to anticipate and optimize cooling strategies to ensure maximal exercise performance

 

Work package 3 compares different re-acclimation strategies to preserve the physiological benefits following classical heat acclimation. Specifically, active (using exercise) and passive (using hot baths) re-acclimation will be compared in a controlled setting. The results of this study will be incorporated in (re-)acclimation protocols that will be disseminated to the coaches, trainers and medical staff of TeamNL.

 

Work package 4 aims to optimize cooling strategies in sports practice. First, the legislation for the application of cooling interventions before and during competition across all different Olympic/Paralympic disciplines will be explored. Second, innovative cooling strategies (smart floating-vest and smart clothing) will be applied and tested in Olympic sailors. Third, optimal cooling strategies will be selected for athletes performing endurance or intermittent exercise in the heat, based on their individual thermoregulatory profile.

 

The achieved synergy between project partners and work packages facilitates an exciting melting pot that sparks novel innovations and studies in the field of applied thermal physiology, with the shared objective to allow safe and optimal exercise performance in the heat. Furthermore, our project perfectly aligns with 2 central themes (Top Performance / Healthy Physical Activity) that have been established in

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