Planned Maintenance
We’ll be carrying out essential maintenance work beginning on Saturday 15th June 2019 at 8:30 am through to Sunday 16th June 2019 at 11:30 pm (BST).

During this time our website may be temporarily affected. We apologise for any inconvenience this might cause and thank you for your patience.
Learn Chemistry is changing
Our new website is coming soon. Find out more

Chemistry in sport - a global experiment from 2012


The Royal Society of Chemistry's first 'global experiment' to comparing the performance enhancement of student made sports drinks vs water. A mass participation experiment from 2012.

This experiment is now closed and data cannot be posted to the website.
You can however run a class investigation from the available worksheet.


A global experiment to comparing the performance enhancement of student made sports drinks vs water. A mass participation experiment from 2012


If you teach primary science, click the headings below to find out how to use this resource:

Skill development

Children will develop their working scientifically skills by:

  • Drawing conclusions and raising further questions that could be investigated, based on their data and observations.Asking their own questions about scientific phenomena.
  • Selecting and planning the most appropriate ways to answer science questions, including:
    • Practicing identifying patterns in data.
  • Recording data and results using scientific diagrams and labels, classification keys, tables, scatter graphs, bar and line graphs.

Learning outcomes

Children will:

  • Recognise the impact of diet, exercise, drugs and lifestyle on the way their bodies function.

Concepts supported

Children will learn:

  • That supplements and drugs can affect bodily functions.

Suggested activity use

You could use this activity as a whole class investigation, with children working in small groups to carry out the investigation and reporting their results to the rest of the class. Even though the actual experiment has finished, it still provides an opportunity for children to analyse the data produced and see if the results indicate any patterns, e.g. does the sport drink enhance performance.

As an extension activity, children could see if their sports drink enhances particular sports or activities more than others.

Practical considerations

You may need to prepare the sports drink before the lesson.

Parental permission may be needed for children to ’test’ the drink before the experiment is carried out.