ACTIVE RECOVERY BOOSTS VO2MAX VALUES IN FEMALE DISTANCE RUNNERS
Bosak, A. M., Rochus, A., & Vial, I. (2008). Effects of two minutes active recovery on a “booster” VO2max test using female distance runners. ACSM 55th Annual Meeting Indianapolis, Presentation Number 2181.
"Maximal aerobic capacity (VO2max) tests typically end at the point of volitional exhaustion. However, previous research determined that concluding a maximal treadmill test with 2 minutes active recovery and allowing averagely fit subjects to exercise a second time at the workload eliciting volitional exhaustion results in significantly greater VO2max values (1.4% mean increase). The potential effects of this testing sequence (2 minutes recovery) on VO2max treadmill tests has not been evaluated utilizing highly fit NCAA female distance runners."
This study examined changes in highly fit individuals' VO2max values following two minutes of active recovery ("booster") at the conclusion of a treadmill graded exercise test to volitional exhaustion. NCAA Division II female cross-country runners (N = 12) completed a maximum treadmill graded exercise test to volitional exhaustion. Immediately following, two minutes of active recovery (0% grade; 2.5 mph) was performed and then Ss exercised to volitional exhaustion a second time. The two maximum effort VO2max values were compared.
The second VO2max test was significantly higher than the first. The average improvement after the two-minute active recovery intervention was +2.1% with individual values ranging from -4.1% to +9.2%. Three out of every four Ss benefited (+4.2% mean increase) from the booster experience with individual increases ranging from +0.5% to +9.2%.
Implication. Two minutes of active recovery allows significantly greater VO2max values to be achieved by a large proportion of female distance runners during treadmill testing, which supports previous “booster max” treadmill research.
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