CHILDREN RESPOND TO ENDURANCE TRAINING SIMILARLY, BUT TO A LESSER EXTENT, THAN ADULTS
Rowland, T., Wehnert, M., & Miller, K. (2000). Cardiac responses to exercise in competitive child cyclists. Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, 32, 747-752.
Cardiovascular responses to exercise in highly trained child endurance cyclists were studied. Competitive children (N = 7) were compared to age-matched untrained boys (N = 39), which served as a control group.
VO2max was significantly higher for trained (60 ml/kg/min) than untrained boys (47 ml/kg/min). At rest and in maximal exercise, trained boys exhibited a greater stroke index. The ratio of maximal:rest stroke index was similar for both groups. Stroke volume leveled-off beyond low-intensity work levels, and there was no difference between the groups in maximal arteriovenous oxygen difference.
Trained children responded hemodynamically to exercise in a manner similar to adults. They demonstrated a lower VO2max (relative to body size) than adult athletes, because of a lesser maximal stroke volume.
Implication. Children respond to intense endurance training in a manner similar to adults but with the magnitude of response characteristics being smaller.
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