Preparing for Extremes: Sport Science in Action
Winnipeg, MB – Winnipeg triathlete Kyla Roy is making the most of the unseasonably warm fall weather. After closing out an exciting season of competition, the 18-year-old says she’s been “going for casual runs and swims,” and has been “mixing it up and riding [her] cyclecross bike on the trails before it snows.”
In September, Roy represented Canada in the Junior Women’s division at the 2016 ITU World Triathlon in Cozumel. Being selected was in itself an exceptional accomplishment for Roy, who – only six months earlier – had suffered an injury that put her entire competitive season in question.
To help with recovery and prepare for the extremes she’d face in Mexico, Roy worked with sport science experts from the Canadian Sport Centre Manitoba (CSCM).
Sport physiologists worked with her on rehab and fitness. “When the average person suffers a stress fracture, they typically just take time off from running to allow it to heal. But for an athlete, time away can have implications for fitness,” says sport physiologist Jérémie Chase. For Roy, time away from training would also have impacted her ability to compete and qualify for Worlds.
The physiology team got Roy access to an Alter-G treadmill*, which creates lower body positive pressure during training. “The benefits are that it reduces the ground reaction forces produced, and it reduces the impact of each footstrike her body has to absorb,” says Chase. “This allows her to heal but also to keep up her fitness through run training.”
Sports dietitian Jorie Janzen developed fuel and hydration strategies for Roy, and psychologist Adrienne Leslie-Toogood helped with mental performance and preparation.
Once she was on the mend, Roy worked with the CSCM team on heat acclimation to prepare for the high temperatures and humidity levels she would face at competition in Mexico. A heat chamber* allowed the team to simulate potential race conditions and monitor Roy’s physical response.
Roy placed 23rd in Cozumel, which, she admits, was not what she’d hoped for. “But I had a great first two legs of the race. This was one of the hottest and hardest races I’ve ever done, and it was such a great experience!”
She says, “I can’t wait for the 2017 season and can’t wait to see what the future holds.”
*A special thank you to our partners at the Pan Am Clinic Foundation for access to the Alter-G, and the Extreme Environmental Exercise lab of Dr. Gordon Giesbrecht for acclimation.
READ MORE from Kyla in this Q&A >>
The Canadian Sport Centre Manitoba (CSCM) was created as one of the many legacies of the 1999 Pan American Games held in Winnipeg. Today, CSCM is the hub for high performance sport in Manitoba. A proud member of the Olympic and Paralympic Sport Institute Network, CSCM works to provide a world-class, multi-sport daily training environment for athletes and coaches through integrated services and programs in the fields of physiology, strength and conditioning, nutrition, psychology and support services.
For more information, contact:
General Manager, Canadian Sport Centre Manitoba
Direct Line: 204.474.7148 | Email: firstname.lastname@example.org