The influence of gender on the glucose response to exercise remains contradictory. Moreover, to our knowledge, the glucoregulatory responses to anaerobic sprint exercise have only been studied in male subjects. Hence, the aim of the present study was to compare glucoregulatory metabolic (glucose and lactate) and hormonal (insulin, catecholamines and estradiol only in women) responses to a 30-s Wingate test, in physically active students. Eight women [19.8 (0.7) years] and eight men [22.0 (0.6) years] participated in a 30-s Wingate test on a bicycle ergometer. Plasma glucose, insulin, and catecholamine concentrations were determined at rest, at the end of both the warm-up and the exercise period and during the recovery (5, 10, 20, and 30 min). Results showed that the plasma glucose increase in response to a 30-s Wingate test was significantly higher in women than in men [0.99 (0.15) versus 0.33 (0.20) mmol l(-1) respectively, P<0.05]. Plasma insulin concentrations peaked at 10 min post-exercise and the increase between this time of recovery and the end of the warm-up was also significantly higher in women than in men [14.7 (2.9) versus 2.3 (1.9) pmol l(-1) respectively, P<0.05]. However, there was no gender difference concerning the catecholamine response. The study indicates a gender-related difference in post-exercise plasma glucose and insulin responses after a supramaximal exercise.