1. ATP is the energy currency of every living cell
2. Carbohydrates are an important part of an athlete’s diet
3. Fats are also important fuels for cells
4. Proteins are used as both structural molecules and as enzymes to catalyse metabolic reactions
5. Muscle cells cause movement by contraction along their length
6. Fats are oxidised to release energy in cells
7. Glycolysis is the first stage of the decomposition of glucose to release energy
8. Gentle exercise uses type 1 muscles and involves aerobic respiration
9. ATP used in muscle contraction is continually regenerated
10. Sprinting involves muscles contracting powerfully and rapidly and utilises type 2 muscle cells
Modern athletes are more aware of diet than previous generations, because more is known about the chemistry of the substances in their diet. An increased understanding of the nature of the biochemical reactions involved in muscular contraction leads to a better and more informed selection of foods.
Biochemists interested in sports performance will continue to seek natural methods of improving performance by paying close attention to the chains of enzyme-catalysed reactions occurring in cells. This module provides an overview of the two extremes of exercise and allows discussion of possible directions of further research.
This module increases students’ understanding of the nature, practice, applications and use of chemistry and current issues, research and developments in chemistry.