Creatine in Rowing - Is it Worth It?

OK, so yesterday's post was long and involved. What does it all boil down to?

  1. Creatine probably works for those doing intensive strength training.
  2. There is little credible evidence that this effect carries over to rowing.
  3. There are risks associated with it, despite what the magazine ads tell you.
  4. It will get expensive - could you spend your money better?

I did a little on-line research - I'm guessing prices in your local health food store would be higher. Three different varieties of creatine (recall, research says all those expensive additives do nothing) were examined. Their serving sizes ranged from 2 g per day to 13.5 g per day. Again, recall even the lowest number here (2g per day) is at the high end of what researches suggest for maintenance doses in long term use. So, all but one company are encouraging you to take product that you will soon be peeing out. Looking at costs, without considering taxes you will be spending anywhere from $0.37 per day up to $1.37 per day.

Sound cheap? Less than a cup of coffee? OK, let's assume that the average cost in the store is on the high end of this range at $1.37 per day. That works out to $501.78 per year. $2508.90 in five years.

If you have unlimited funds I guess it's your choice.

If not maybe stop looking for a bottled edge and do some extra training! I'll bet it would be much more beneficial. How long before $500 per year in supplements will buy you your own ergometer? Or a single even?

If you are bound and determined to try it - go for the cheap stuff, research says it won't matter. Forget what they ask you to take on the bottle…take no more than 2 grams (that's 2000 mg) per day. While you're at it - go see your doctor and let him know what you're doing. I don't recommend taking it.