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Vitamin D and Physical Performance in Athletes

[ Vol. 14 , Issue. 3 ]


Shane D. Scholten and Igor N. Sergeev   Pages 152 - 161 ( 10 )


The prevalence of vitamin D insufficiency in athletes is concerning due to the potential negative effects on physical performance. The concept that vitamin D status positively correlates with measures of muscular strength and cardiorespiratory fitness is receiving increased interest among a wide range of athletes. We reviewed published studies that examined the association of vitamin D status with, and the effect of vitamin D supplementation on measures of athletic performance. An increased vitamin D status was associated with improved athletic performance in only one observational study. Several intervention studies demonstrated that the improvement in muscular strength occurs when athletes with low vitamin D status are restored to vitamin D sufficient status. Further research in various athletic populations is needed to establish the role of vitamin D in athletic performance and optimal vitamin D status in athletes.


25-hydroxyvitamin D, athletic performance, cardiorespiratory fitness, muscle strength, physical performance, vitamin D, vitamin D deficiency.


Department of Health and Nutritional Sciences, South Dakuta State University, Box 2203, Brookings, SD 57007.

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