RESPIRATORY MUSCLE TRAINING IMPROVES INTERMITTENT-SPRINT PERFORMANCE

Nicks, C., Farley, R., Fuller, D., Morgan, D., & Caputo, J. (20060. The effect of respiratory muscle training on performance, dyspnea, and respiratory muscle fatigue in intermittent sprint athletes. Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, 38(5), Supplement abstract 2152.

This study determined the effect of respiratory muscle training (RMT) on respiratory muscle strength, performance, dyspnea, and respiratory muscle fatigue (RMF) in intermittent sprint athletes. Collegiate soccer players (M = 20; F = 7) were randomly divided into either a respiratory muscle training or control condition. The respiratory muscle training group received five weeks of respiratory muscle training using a commercially available training device (Powerlung Inc.), while the control group received no intervention. Both groups continued to train under the supervision of their coaches throughout the intervention. The Yo-Yo Intermittent Recovery Test, designed to evaluate intermittent-sprint fitness, was used to assess performance. Dyspnea was assessed during and immediately following the respiratory muscle training. Respiratory muscle fatigue was assessed 2 minutes and 10 minutes after completion of the Intermittent Recovery Test.

Performance improved by 16.7% 17.2% in the respiratory muscle training group, while no significant increase (5.2% 7.8%) occurred in the control group. The respiratory muscle training group also demonstrated a significant increase in respiratory muscle strength (20.5% 15.4%), whereas the control group exhibited little change in this variable. No statistically significant changes in dyspnea or respiratory muscle fatigue were detected in either group.

Implication. Respiratory muscle training improves performance and respiratory muscle strength in intermittent sprint athletes.

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