INTERMITTENT HYPOXIA DOES NOT IMPROVE VENTILATION IN TRAINING ATHLETES
Townsend, N. E., Gore, C. J., Truijens, M. J., Rodriguez, F. A., Stray-Gundersen, J., & Levine, B. D. (2004). Ventilatory acclimatization to intermittent hypoxia in well-trained runners and swimmers. Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, 36(5), Supplement abstract 2315.
Intermittent hypoxia produces ventilatory adaptations in sedentary individuals. This study assessed if a similar adaptation occurred in athletes involved in vigorous sea-level training. Athletes (swimmers = 12; runners = 9) were matched and assigned to either a hypobaric hypoxic or normobaric normoxic group. Hypoxia was simulated for an altitude of 4,000 to 5000 meters. Both groups rested for three hours per day, five days per week, for four weeks in a hypobaric chamber, but under the differing conditions of altitude simulation.
The group by day interaction was non-significant for rest ventilation, hypoxic ventilation, hypercapnic ventilatory response, and submaximal exercise.
Implication. Brief daily exposures to simulated high altitudes do not produce ventilatory acclimatization in vigorously training athletes.
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