Fitness | Nutrition | Oct 05 2015

Beta-alanine: 4 things about the acid that improves punch power

Marc Fell explains the ins and outs of Beta-alanine
Mike Tyson beats Bruce Seldon, showing power that can be aided by Beta-Alanine
BA-main  |  Action Images/Nick Potts

SINCE we all know that boxing is a sport characterised by 12 three-minute rounds of high-intensity, intermittent exercise, it is therefore essential that boxers aim at achieving well-developed aerobic and anaerobic systems in order to maintain the output of powerful and technically adept punches frequently throughout the duration of a fight. As a fight progresses these high-intensity bouts will however result in boxers experiencing fatigue as a result of increased muscle acidosis. Therefore any strategy to prolong the onset of fatigue will be of benefit to a fighter as it may provide a competitive edge over their opponent.

Beta-alanine supplementation may in fact fuel such a strategy as it has been found to increase carnosine stores within the muscle, which then acts as an intracellular buffer to metabolic acidosis. This means that the onset of muscle fatigue may be prolonged, subsequently increasing high-intensity boxing performance, i.e. improved punching force and frequency.

Here are my four four key take-home messages surrounding the appropriate use of beta-alanine as an ergogenic aid.

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