Mark R McKean, Timothy B Stockwell and Brendan J Burkett
Objectives: The objective of this study was to compare response; specifically oxygen consumption; of a single bout of exercise using two different (constant and interval) intensity protocols in an aged population.
Design: Ten males (68.8 ± 3.7 years) and six females (66.2 ± 3.5 years) were recruited for this study. All participants were actively involved in three hours of physical activity per week and were able to use a cycle ergometer unaided.
Methods: Participants completed two randomised 20 min exercise protocols on a cycle ergometer, each with equal work output. The constant intensity session was at 50% of Vo2max, and the 1 min interval session varied from 70% to 30% Vo2max. Oxygen consumption was measured during the following phases; resting, warm-up, exercise, cooldown and 20 mins post-exercise.
Results: Similar values were found when comparing the overall oxygen consumption for the constant and interval protocols respectively. However, significant differences (p<0.05) were found between the two different intensities during the exercise phase.
Conclusions: The interval training protocol consumed higher levels of oxygen during the exercise phase when compared to the constant intensity protocol, despite the participants reporting similar RPE. These age-specific differences should be considered for future exercise prescription for this at-risk population.
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