LABORATORY HEART RATES UNDERESTIMATE FIELD TEST HEART RATES AT ANAEROBIC THRESHOLD
Smith, J. D., Newberry, J. E., Sherman, N. W., Ruiz, A., & Hughes, J. R. (1998). A comparison of field and laboratory estimates of the anaerobic threshold. Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, 30(5), Supplement abstract 619.
Middle and long-distance runners (M = 18; F = 14) performed a maximal graded exercise test in a laboratory setting and two field tests, each designed to locate anaerobic threshold. The Step/Breath method measured heart rate at the end of a 20-minute run at a set pace. The 5-km Pace Method involved adding 75 seconds to Ss' most recent 5-K race and recording heart rates while pacing. Heart rate at anaerobic threshold was recorded in the laboratory run.
It was found that both running tasks (S/B by +12 bpm; 5-K by +11 bpm) significantly overestimated heart rate at anaerobic threshold.
Implication. Laboratory tests that yield the heart rate associated with anaerobic threshold significantly underestimate heart rates associated with AT in field tests. Laboratory heart rate levels should not be used for practical applications.
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