Welcome to the most comprehensive Kraken pre-workout review on the internet.
A detailed yet simple breakdown of everything you need to know about this Sparta Nutrition produced supplement, from which ingredients are included and at what dosages, to how much it costs, where you can buy it and lots more!
If you’re starting to take your workout regime more seriously, then chances are you’ve heard of pre-workout supplements, and most likely done a little bit of online research about them. You ask yourself, are they really worth the money, do they actually do anything to help my exercise performance?
And what are you met with? Most likely, sales pitch after sales pitch and manufacturer after manufacturer telling you that their pre workout supplement is the best on the market but without actually offering any proper explanation as to why!
Well, that doesn’t have to be the way. Our completely independent review is based solely on the latest scientific research and contextualised against a significant bank of other pre-workout product reviews. This way, we simply give you the information you need to make up your own mind. Simple!
About Sparta Nutrition
“Sparta Nutrition was founded with one simple goal in mind: real products and real results. At Sparta, we don’t believe in selling you flashy taglines, models and athletes that don’t even use the products they advertise or products with sizeable margins. At Sparta Nutrition, we believe in producing the absolute best products-backed by science, driven by research, and sustained through results. It’s time to seize your glory.”
If you didn’t already know what we meant by “sales pitch”, you sure as hell do now. This is a pretty typical supplement brand description. Vague, full of promises and normally complete bullshit.
The only real way for our Sparta Nutrition Kraken pre-workout review to sieve through such marketing spiel, is to dig deeper into the key ingredients which feature and their precise quantities.
But before we do, we need to address a frequent enquiry when it comes to Kraken…
Was there an old formula? Was it banned?
Yes and sort of!
The original Kraken pre-workout formula contained an amphetamine like compound known as DMHA (dimethylamylamine). A psychoactive central nervous system stimulant originally used as a nasal decongestant, but more recently finding its way into pre-workout formulas with increasing regularity.
Thought to produce significant energy bursts, improved focus and reduced appetite, you can see why this is the case. Unfortunately, it also comes with a list of potential dangerous side effects including increased blood pressure and heart palpitations. As a result, it’s inclusion in dietary supplements is being increasingly monitored by the FDA, and for that reason, the original Kraken pre-workout, which included a dose of DMHA has been discontinued and replaced with a new range.
Whilst this may reduce the potency of the products stimulating effect, it is certainly a major positive to the safety of this pre-workout and your health more globally!
So, now our Kraken pre-workout by Sparta Nutrition review has determined that it no longer contains DMHA, it’s time to take a closer look and what it does contain!
Ingredients in Kraken pre-workout explained
Before we delve deeper into our ingredients breakdown we need to consider one vital question… Does Kraken make use of any proprietary blends?
For those who are unaware, a proprietary blend is a mix of ingredients where the total weight of the blend is disclosed but not the individual weights of each component ingredient. This makes it very difficult for you to determine exactly how much of everything you’re putting into your body every time you consume a scoop. Not a great place to be when it comes to taking something where dosages are king!
Fortunately for this product, there isn’t a single proprietary blend in sight. Good start to the ingredients section of our Kraken review!
All of the dosages quoted below are based on a 2 scoop (16g) serving of this product.
With the capacity to reduce fatigue and give you almighty muscle pumps, citrulline is one of the more popular ingredients included in pre-workout supplements these days. By increasing blood arginine levels and boosting your production of something called nitric oxide, citrulline helps to improve circulation and allow more oxygen to reach your working muscles during intense exercise.
Most scientific studies into l-citrulline suggest that the optimum dose is 3-6g per day for at least 7 days. As a result, the 4g included in Kraken seems to be bang on.
Whilst we prefer pre-workout supplements to contain citrulline malate as opposed to pure l-citrulline, because of the energy boosting implications of the former and the fact it does not require loading, we can’t really argue too much with an optimally dosed ingredient of citrulline’s quality and effectiveness!
Beta alanine (3.2g)
Outside of creatine monohydrate, beta alanine is probably the most widely researched and clinically effective nutritional supplement when it comes to exercise performance. By increasing your muscle stores of something called carnosine, supplementation with beta alanine helps you to buffer lactic acid and reduce the effects of fatigue during intense anaerobic activity.
In order to do so, the scientific research suggests that a daily dose of 4-6g for a period of at least 2 weeks is required. That means the 3.2g per 2 scoop serving comes a little shy of the lower end of this recommended quantity. Having said that, it still offers a better dose than the vast majority of pre-workout supplements on the market which offer beta alanine as a component ingredient.
You will still feel the effects of this dosage eventually, it’s probably just going to take a little longer to saturate your muscle stores. All in all, not a bad effort from Kraken here.
Caffeine (250 mg)
Caffeine is proven to help you get into the right physical and mental state for tough workouts offering that all important energy boost. There is also plenty of evidence to suggest that it has a thermogenic effect, boosting your metabolism and helping you to burn more fat during sessions! Sounds like a pretty good combo to us.
The science tells us that caffeine has benefits for exercise performance at doses as low as 100 mg and can be safely consumed at levels as high as 400 mg per day. We consider the 250 mg dose in Kraken to be right on the money, offering enough stimulation without some of the nasty side effects associated with extremely high doses.
There are a number of other ingredients in Kraken, including doses of glycerol, taurine and tyrosine.
But given the complete lack of scientific evidence to support their ergogenic implications for exercise performance, our Sparta Nutrition Kraken pre-workout review considers their inclusion largely inconsequential.
As a result we will not be discussing them, or their doses in any more detail!
Are there any side effects?
Most pre-workout supplements go hand in hand with a few potential minor side effects, most of which are associated to stimulant ingredients. Now, thankfully Kraken no longer contains DMHA so we don’t need to worry about some of the serious side effects which can result from consuming that… Phew!
Whilst caffeine can lead to symptoms such as anxiety, the jitters, diarrhea and vomiting, the 250 mg dose in this product isn’t especially potent and shouldn’t cause any problems for most users. If, however, you have particularly low caffeine tolerance, it may be sensible to start with one scoop of this product just to test the waters!
The only other ingredient which is likely to cause some kind of side effect is beta alanine, the consumption of which normally results in a tingling sensation on the surface of the skin. This is, however, completely harmless and normally subsides after 20 minutes or so. Take it as evidence that you are actually consuming a meaningful dose of beta alanine and not something completely useless!
Pros and cons
At $49.99 on the official Sparta Nutrition website, Kraken pre-workout comes in at an absolutely extortionate $2.50 per serving (2 scoops). That makes it by far and away the most expensive pre-workout we have ever reviewed. So much for selling products without “sizeable margins”!
There are 7 flavor options available which means even the fussiest of customers should be able to find a taste to their liking. These include the typically whacky options such as: cotton candy, sour gummy and the rather intriguingly named sex on the beach…
Where to buy Kraken pre-workout by Sparta Nutrition?
Kraken is available on the official Sparta Nutrition website but there does seem to be an issue with stock, with numerous customer complaints about the lack of availability of their pre-workout range.
You can also purchase the product at well respected supplement websites such as: predatornutrition.com, thesuppshouse.com, tigerfitness.com and also the global online retail giant Amazon!
All in all there isn’t an awful lot for our Kraken pre-workout review to complain about. There are solid doses of some of the most effective ingredients on the market in citrulline, beta alanine and caffeine, and the lack of proprietary blends on show is a major positive.
For the price, however, we expect much more from Sparta Nutrition! $2.50 per serving is a significant amount more than the vast majority of pre-workouts on the market, with many offering the same kinds of dosages, if not better, for a much cheaper price.
For $2.50 per serving you should really be getting a massive dose of citrulline malate, rather than the slightly inferior pure l-citrulline dosed towards the bottom of end of optimal. You should definitely be getting a larger serving of beta alanine, and arguably there should be one more key active ingredient with good levels of scientific research to support its inclusion.
Instead you get a number of other mediocre ingredients in small doses which have limited if any studies to support their benefits for exercise performance.
Our final conclusion…? Whilst you will definitely see some benefits to your workout regime using Kraken, you can have the same benefits for significantly less cost elsewhere. Our advice…? Keep looking!
 beta-Alanine supplementation augments muscle carnosine content and attenuates fatigue during repeated isokinetic contraction bouts in trained sprinters- J Appl Physiol (1985). 2007 Nov;103(5
 Stellingwerff T, Anwander H, Egger A, Buehler T, Kreis R, Decombaz J, et al. Effect of two beta-alanine dosing protocols on muscle carnosine synthesis and washout. Amino Acids. 2012;42(6):2461–72. doi: 10.1007/s00726-011-1054-4 and Harris RC, Jones GA, Kim HJ, Kim CK, Price KA, Wise JA. Changes in muscle carnosine of subjects with 4 weeks of supplementation with a controlled relase formulation of beta-alanine (CarnoSyn), and for 6 weeks post (Abstract) FASEB J. 2009;23:599.4.
 Fat burners: nutrition supplements that increase fat metabolism- Obesity Reviews 2011