INTERVAL SWIMMING IS MORE CONSISTENT AND OF BETTER QUALITY THAN CONTINUOUS SWIMMING

Oliveira, M. F., Caputo, F., Dekerle, J., Denadai, B. S., & Greco, C. C. (2010). Technical and physiological changes during continuous vs. intermittent swims at and above maximal lactate steady state. A paper presented at the XIth International Symposium for Biomechanics and Medicine in Swimming, Oslo, June 1619, 2010.

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This study aimed to verify whether maximal lactate steady state determined using continuous or intermittent protocols represented a boundary above which not only physiological but also technical changes occurred. Endurance swimmers (N = 13; ~23 years) performed four to eight 30-minute sub-maximal tests, to determine the continuous-swimming maximal lactate steady state and the interval-training maximal lactate steady state (12 x 150 s with 30 s of passive recovery). Blood lactate was analyzed at minutes 10 and 30 of each test.

The interval swimming velocity was 3.2% better than that of continuous swimming while blood lactate levels were similar. As the tests continued, changes in technique and velocity were more pronounced in continuous than interval swimming.

Implication. Continuous swimming tasks at practice produce slower swimming and greater changes over their duration than interval swimming.

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