Supplementation is a fast growing industry, especially in sports competition and exercise. There is an ever increasing range of vitamins and minerals that can be bought at your local supermarket, and protein powders are a gigantic market, especially since the commercialisation of gyms. Creatine products are also increasing on the market, with proposed benefits to training and sprint performance.

It is important for athletes to know whether any of these supplements will benefit performance, how they will affect their health, the possible side effects and whether the athlete should take them.

Athletes with a well balanced diet will not need to take supplements, however, there are many athletes who do not eat a balanced diet, and many who do not know how to balance their diet. There are occasions when supplementation is warranted, especially in athletes who are deficient in particular vitamins and minerals, such as iron or B-vitamins.

Common supplements in sport include: vitamins, minerals, protein, caffeine and creatine. You are required to analyse the evidence with regards to their affects on performance. In order to do this I recommend you use the AIS website and look at the Sports Supplement Framework, looking through the classes A to D.

Students learn about:

Students learn to:

  • Critically analyse the evidence for and against supplementation for improved performance

Past HSC PDHPE exam questions

2010 Question 24

Assess the value of products containing creatine as supplements for improved performance. 4 Marks

2013 Question 27

What are the advantages and disadvantages of protein supplementation and creatine supplementation for improved athletic performance? 5 Marks