SIMULATED ALTITUDE TRAINING DOES NOT BENEFIT SWIMMERS
Truijens, M. J., Palmer, D., Witkowski, S., Chase, P., van Asseldonk, E., Toussaint, H. M., & Levine, B. D. (2003). The effect of high intensity, hypoxic training on VO2 kinetics in well trained swimmers. Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, 35(5), Supplement abstract 1861.
Collegiate and master swimmers (M = 6; F = 10) completed a five-week training program, consisting of three high intensity training sessions and supplemental low or moderate intensity sessions in a pool each week for five weeks. Ss were matched for gender, performance level, and training history and assigned to either hypoxic (simulated altitude of 2,500 m) or normoxic interval training. Low intensity work was performed in a normoxic pool. Ss were tested with a supra-maximal test to exhaustion under normoxic conditions in a swimming flume at controlled water velocities pre- and post-training.
The rate of oxygen uptake did not change significantly for all Ss or when divided into groups. Maximal oxygen uptake increased in both groups and the group as a whole. Five weeks of high intensity training in a flume improved VO2max, but not VO2 kinetics in well-trained swimmers. No benefit was observed from hypoxic training (simulated altitude training) because both groups changed similarly.
Implication. Five-weeks of three times per week high-intensity training improved VO2max, but hypoxic training (such as that involved in hi-lo altitude training) did not produce any changes that were different to a group without hypoxic training.
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