However, Loughborough University researcher Dr Mark Burnley has done just that as he seeks what lessons humans can learn from our furry friends.
In the latest episode of the Experts in Sport podcast, Dr Burnley sits down with guest host Stuart McErlain-Naylor to discuss parallels between the animal kingdom and humans, and what can be learnt when applying practices to human athletes’ performance and power-duration relationships.
During the episode, it is considered how experimental issues may produce undesirable effects on research. Mark and Stuart also talk about how beta-alanine supplements and other substances in the supplement industry have been developed, primarily from understanding lung-limitation in horses and changing the muscle’s buffer capacity to account for this.
In a wide-ranging recording, parameters such as critical speed and distance prime are examined, considering the effect of creatine monohydrate upon these variables. Reasoning for endurance training methods are also questioned, with humans utilising these methods for athletic development, as opposed to animals escaping predators in the wild for survival.
Dr Burnley is a Senior Lecturer at Loughborough University in the School of Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences, specialising in the physiology of endurance exercise. He initially studied a PhD around the kinetics of oxygen uptake response to exercise at different intensities. Having previously taught at Aberystwyth University, Mark was instrumental in establishing a comparative physiology degree comparing horses and humans to evaluate the relationship between the two.
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The Experts in Sport podcast is a regular series that brings together experts from across Loughborough University with external thought leaders to discuss the latest research and hot topics in sport and academia with new episodes launched regularly.