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Tactical Supplementation

Updated: Apr 4, 2023

As a tactical athlete, it is crucial to maintain peak physical performance at all times to ensure mission readiness. One way to enhance physical performance is by utilizing sports supplements. However, with so many supplements available in the market, it can take time to determine which ones are the most important for tactical athletes. This article will explore the top sports supplements essential for tactical athletes based on recent research.

Creatine Monohydrate - Creatine monohydrate is one of the most extensively researched supplements and has been shown to improve strength, power, and lean body mass in tactical athletes. Studies from Havenetidis (2016) & Samadi et al. (2022) found that creatine supplementation improved muscle strength and power output in military personnel during training. Furthermore, creatine has also enhanced cognitive performance, which is crucial for tactical athletes during high-pressure situations.

Beta-Alanine - Beta-alanine is an amino acid that improves muscular endurance by buffering lactic acid build-up during high-intensity exercise. Studies from Hoffman et al. (2016) & Samadi et al. (2022) found that beta-alanine supplementation improved high-intensity, short-duration activities like sprints, jumping, and muscular endurance. Samadi et al. (2022) found that military personnel who received beta-alanine and creatine supplementation for four weeks experienced significant improvements in physical performance, including increased VO2max, increased time to exhaustion during a maximal cycling test, improved muscle power and endurance, and improved muscle strength and power during resistance exercises.

Caffeine - Caffeine is a stimulant that improves cognitive performance, increases endurance, and reduces perceived exertion during exercise. A meta-analysis by Grgic et al. (2020) found that caffeine supplementation improved endurance, strength, and power in resistance-trained individuals.

Omega-3 Fatty Acids - Omega-3 fatty acids are essential fats that play a crucial role in reducing inflammation and improving cardiovascular health. A study conducted by Witard (2021) found that omega-3 supplementation improved cardiovascular function and reduced inflammation in military personnel.

Whey Protein - Whey protein is a fast-digesting protein that improves muscle protein synthesis and aid in muscle recovery. A study by Pasiakos et al. (2015) found that whey protein supplementation improves lean body mass and muscular strength in military personnel with a resistance training program.

In conclusion, tactical athletes require sports supplements to enhance physical performance and cognitive function and aid injury prevention and recovery. Based on recent research, the most important sports supplements for tactical athletes include creatine monohydrate, beta-alanine, caffeine, omega-3 fatty acids, and whey protein. When choosing supplements, it is crucial to consult with a healthcare professional to ensure safety and efficacy. Tactical athletes can optimize their physical performance and achieve their mission-ready goals by incorporating these supplements into a well-rounded training and nutrition program.


Grgic, J., Grgic, I., Pickering, C., Schoenfeld, B. J., Bishop, D. J., & Pedisic, Z. (2020). Wake up and smell the coffee: caffeine supplementation and exercise performance—an umbrella review of 21 published meta-analyses. British Journal of Sports Medicine, 54(11), 681-688. doi: 10.1136/bjsports-2018-100278

Havenetidis, K. J. (2016). Creatine supplementation: a review of efficacy and safety. Journal of the Royal Army Medical Corps, 162(4), 242-248. doi: 10.1136/jramc-2014-000400

Hoffman, J. R., Stout, J. R., Harris, R. C., Moran, D. S., & Phillips, S. M. (2015). β-Alanine supplementation and military performance. Amino acids, 47(12), 2463-2474. doi: 10.1007/s00726-015-2051-9.

Pasiakos, S. M., McLellan, T. M., & Lieberman, H. R. (2015). The effects of protein supplements on muscle mass, strength, and aerobic and anaerobic power in healthy adults: a systematic review. Sports Medicine, 45(1), 111-131. doi: 10.1007/s40279-014-0242-2.

Samadi, M., Askarian, A., Shirvani, H., Shamsoddini, A., Shakibaee, A., Forbes, S. C., & Kaviani, M. (2022). Effects of four weeks of beta-alanine supplementation combined with one week of creatine loading on physical and cognitive performance in military personnel. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 19(13), 7992. doi: 10.3390/ijerph19137992.

Witard, O. C. (2018). Omega-3 fatty acids for training adaptation and exercise recovery: a muscle-centric perspective in athletes. Sports Medicine, 48(3), 509-522. doi: 10.1007/s40279-017-0840-3.

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