Lane, A. M., Whyte, G. P., Shave, R., Barney, S., Wilson, M., & Terry, P. C. (2003). Mood disturbance during cycling performance at altitude. Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, 35(5), Supplement abstract 888.

This study investigated 1) mood changes during a two-hour cycling test during normoxic and hypoxic (simulated 2,500 m) conditions, and 2) mood dynamics that lead to depressed mood. Male elite cyclists (N = 8) performed two 50-mile bouts at lactate threshold intensity on a cycle ergometer. Trials were two weeks apart. Mood was assessed before, after one and two hours of exercise, and upon completion of the task. The Brunel Mood Scale was used to assess mood.

Fatigue increased significantly more at simulated altitude than at sea level conditions. Mood state shifts were greater at altitude than sea level. As fatigue increased so did mood disturbances.

Implication. Altitude increases mood disturbances in exercise (altitude exercise is more stressful).

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