Cardiorespiratory Responses to Shallow Water Exercise: A Sex Comparison

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Department or Administrative Unit

Nutrition Exercise and Health Sciences

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This investigation examinedphysiological responses to shallow waterexercise (SWE) and to a high-intensity interval SWE workout (HIISWE) in males (M, n=9) and females(F, n=9). Participants performed 5 X 5 min. SWE bouts (bts.) at ratings of perceived exertion (RPE) 9, 11, 13, 15 and 17 (Borg scale) and a maximalbout ofSWE with metabolic, heart rate (HR), and blood lactate (BLa) responses monitored. The same measurements were performed during HIISWE (4 X 4-min bts., alternating 20-s “all-out” and 10-s rest). Peak oxygen uptake (V̇O2) and BLa were greater in M (3.6±0.4 vs. 2.7±0.3 l.min-1, 10.9±1.3 vs. 8.1±1.7 mM) (p<0.05), with no difference in peak HR (185±7 (M) vs. 181±7 (F) bpm). Irrespective of sex, V̇O2and HR were not different among mins. 3, 4, and 5 of ea. SWE effort (p>0.05). Peak BLa for HIISWE was 11.1±2.2 (M) and 9.2±1.7 (F) mM (p<0.05) with RPE ~18-19 for both sexes. Relative cardiorespiratory responses were similar between males and females during HIISWE. Perceptual self-regulation of intensity is a viable approach to controlling physiological load during SWE. Regardless of sex, HIISWE elicitedphysiological and perceptual responses categorized as “vigorous” to “near maximal to maximal” intensity bythe American College of Sports Medicine.


This article was originally published in International Journal of Aquatic Research and Education. The full-text article from the publisher can be found here.


International Journal of Aquatic Research and Education