BLOOD FACTORS INCREASED BY LOW ALTITUDE TRAINING
Frese, F., Eisenkolb, E., Schmidt, W. F., Bartsch, P., & Friedmann, B. (2008). Effects of repetitive training at low altitude on erythropoiesis in elite 400m and 800m runners. ACSM 55th Annual Meeting Indianapolis, Presentation Number, 1266.
This study evaluated if repetitive low altitude training camps cause an increase in erythropoiesis and total blood hemoglobin. Elite 400 m and 800 m runners (M = 4; F = 4) performed training camps in South Africa (1,300 m) and Namibia (1,650 m) for 20 and 22 days, interspersed by 19 days of sea-level training. A control group (N = 9) of well-trained runners (M = 6; F = 3) experienced comparable sea-level training.
Total blood hemoglobin increased over the two altitude training camps but did not change in the sea level control group. Erythropoietin was significantly increased by 28% on days 10 and 17 in South Africa and by 33-45% on days 2, 10, and 17 compared to the values measured after altitude training.
Implication. Repetitive training at low altitude (1,300-1,650 m) induces an increase in erythropoiesis and an augmentation of total blood hemoglobin. [Whether these changes translate into improved performances at sea level or low altitude was not determined.]
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