CrossFit involves daily workouts – known as ‘WODS’ (workouts of the day) – that are a combination of aerobic activity, weight-lifting and gymnastics.
It is practised in more than 10,000 gyms worldwide, half of which are in the US. Its methodology is also used by fire departments, law enforcement agencies and military organizations.
However, in addition it is increasingly popular as a competitive sport. The CrossFit Games have been held every summer since 2007, and are a serious business. There were 273,000 entrants in the 2015 event, competing for a total prize pot of $2m – with $275,000 going to each of the winners in the male and female categories.
Demand on muscles
Because of the frequency and intensity of exercise involved in CrossFit, great demands are placed on the muscles. As a result, Arla Foods Ingredients predicts that participants will increasingly seek out sports nutrition products that enable them to recover fast enough to maintain the intensity of their WODS day after day.
In recent studies it was found that supplementation with whey protein hydrolysate after resistance training resulted in increased muscle and tendon growth and stimulated the muscle stem cells (satellite cells) that are essential in the repair and maintenance of muscle.
In another study, researchers found that supplementation with whey protein helped maintain muscle strength following the type of exercise that causes muscle damage.
Demand for products
In turn this will drive demand for premium sports nutrition ingredients, such as Arla Foods Ingredients’ Lacprodan HYDRO.365. This is a whey protein hydrolysate that is absorbed rapidly by the body, helping muscles recover more quickly after intense exercise.
Peter Schouw Andersen, head of science & sales development at Arla Foods Ingredients, said that as CrossFit is often practiced daily, there is only a small window for muscle recovery.
“HYDRO.365 helps reduce muscle recovery times from days to hours, supporting people in their efforts to stay in perfect shape to maintain their CrossFit regime,” he said.