The hot science cooling down our athletes at the Tokyo Olympics

28 July 2021

斯蒂芬·费尼莫(Stephen Fenemor)在2020年东京奥运会上与新西兰运动员合作.

When Stephen Fenemor was a boy, growing up in Motueka at the top of the South Island, he dreamed of representing his country.

这位来自莫图埃卡高中的体育狂人喜欢打橄榄球和板球, and channelled that passion into studying sports science at university.

Last October, while finishing up his Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Health, Sport and Human Performance from the University of Waikato, Stephen landed his dream job as a performance physiologist at High Performance Sport New Zealand (HPSNZ).

“我的角色是在许多不同的活动中工作,并成为热研究的联络人或联系人,” says Stephen, who is the Heat Lead for a dozen different Olympic and Paralympic teams.

In mid-July, 他作为HPSNZ准备和恢复团队的一员飞往日本,为新西兰运动员提供支持 Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, which runs from Friday 23 July to Sunday 8 August 2021.


“It’s a real privilege to be part of it; even though you are not an athlete you get to represent your country. For an athlete, it’s the pinnacle of your sport, and for a practitioner as well, 这是一个测试自己、验证自己的知识、处理各种各样的运动和情况的时候.”

斯蒂芬在uedbet官网的博士研究主要集中在热管理策略, 包括运动员如何准备在高温下的表现,以及在高温条件下训练和比赛的冷却策略.

正是来自HPSNZ的性能生理学团队的专业知识,uedbet官网的奥运会运动员在东京所依赖的, which is predicted to be the hottest Olympic games on record.

“In Tokyo, 在奥运期间,气温可能达到35摄氏度,湿度高达80%,” says Stephen. “Those conditions can feel like up to 50 degrees (Celsius).”


“If your core temperature is 37 degrees Celsius, that is normal, but a movement of two degrees, to 39 degrees, 你就会开始表现出体温过高的迹象.”

“When you get too hot you are unable to perform at the same intensity. For example, once your core temperature is elevated above 39 degrees, 对于一些运动员来说,重复冲刺的表现或保持相同强度的能力可能会下降.”

Stephen began his PhD research in mid-2018, a collaboration between Waikato University, HPSNZ and New Zealand Rugby. Although still finalising his thesis, the research and relationships built with athletes, coaches and teams have informed his work with HPSNZ.

它涉及在主管Martyn Beaven的指导下为七人橄榄球制定热量管理策略, Nicholas Gill and Matt Driller at the University of Waikato Adams Centre for High Performance in Mount Maunganui, along with supervision from Julia Casadio of HPSNZ, who is an expert in heat management strategies for elite athletes.

“I loved living in Mt Maunganui,” recalls Stephen. “在那里读博士真的很特别,尤其是和一支精英运动队一起工作.”

“When I started in 2018, not a lot of heat research had been done in an applied sports context, especially in team sports or contact sports, like Rugby Sevens.”

He began with his research trials in Fiji, travelling with the Men's Rugby Sevens team, 并在比赛条件下测量高温对个别运动员的影响.

“我真的很感激他们让我觉得自己是团队的一员,并将我纳入其中. They were really keen to learn as well, and were driven and focused.”

He also worked with the Women’s Rugby Sevens teams.

其中一种策略是运动后浸泡热水——训练后坐在40摄氏度的热水浴缸里40分钟, with fluids restricted.

“Those sessions were the hardest on the athletes. They told me that they hated me a lot,” laughs Stephen.

Due to Covid-19 restrictions, 许多奥运运动员不能像往常一样在海外训练或比赛.

Instead, to prepare for the Tokyo heat, many of our Olympic teams used heat chamber facilities, such as the Adams Centre.

To mimic the hot, humid conditions, the heat chamber was set to 35 degrees Celsius and 80 percent humidity. 斯蒂芬与七人橄榄球表演队合作,监测和跟踪运动员的重要体征,包括他们的核心体温, heart rate, sweat rate and thermal comfort.

Typically, 在高温下训练或比赛时,骑Erg自行车的运动员每小时会流失大量汗水.

“In the chamber there at Mt Maunganui, sometimes we’d have all the [Men’s Rugby Sevens] boys in there at once, 20 athletes and probably on average they’d have a sweat rate of 1.每小时5-2公斤,所以在45分钟的会议上,你会有大约30升的汗水落在地上.”

经常使用热室可以帮助运动员更好地准备和适应高温, humid conditions.

Researchers were able to trial cooling strategies, including the use of ice vests and ice slushies before and during training.

During the Tokyo Olympics, Stephen is working closely in a three-person Preparation and Recovery team, which also includes a nutritionist and a strength and conditioning coach.



“我去那里的目的是让东京的高温对运动员来说不是问题. We are prepared and ready for it.”

This research aligns with the following United Nations Sustainable Development Goals:

Good Health and Well-being

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