Short-duration beta-alanine supplementation increases training volume and reduces subjective feelings of fatigue in college football players

Nutr Res. 2008 Jan;28(1):31-5. doi: 10.1016/j.nutres.2007.11.004.


The purpose of this study was to examine the effect of 30 days of beta-alanine supplementation in collegiate football players on anaerobic performance measures. Subjects were randomly divided into a supplement (beta-alanine group [BA], 4.5 g x d(-1) of beta-alanine) or placebo (placebo group [P], 4.5 g x d(-1) of maltodextrin) group. Supplementation began 3 weeks before preseason football training camp and continued for an additional 9 days during camp. Performance measures included a 60-second Wingate anaerobic power test and 3 line drills (200-yd shuttle runs with a 2-minute rest between sprints) assessed on day 1 of training camp. Training logs recorded resistance training volumes, and subjects completed questionnaires on subjective feelings of soreness, fatigue, and practice intensity. No difference was seen in fatigue rate in the line drill, but a trend (P = .07) was observed for a lower fatigue rate for BA compared with P during the Wingate anaerobic power test. A significantly higher training volume was seen for BA in the bench press exercise, and a trend (P = .09) for a greater training volume was seen for all resistance exercise sessions. In addition, subjective feelings of fatigue were significantly lower for BA than P. In conclusion, despite a trend toward lower fatigue rates during 60 seconds of maximal exercise, 3 weeks of beta-alanine supplementation did not result in significant improvements in fatigue rates during high-intensity anaerobic exercise. However, higher training volumes and lower subjective feelings of fatigue in BA indicated that as duration of supplementation continued, the efficacy of beta-alanine supplementation in highly trained athletes became apparent.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adaptation, Physiological
  • Anaerobic Threshold
  • Dietary Supplements
  • Double-Blind Method
  • Fatigue / prevention & control*
  • Football*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Muscle Strength / physiology
  • Physical Endurance / physiology*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Weight Lifting / physiology*
  • Young Adult
  • beta-Alanine / administration & dosage
  • beta-Alanine / pharmacology*


  • beta-Alanine