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  • Author: Marek Zatoń x
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Introduction. Since mountain biking involves exercise of varying intensity, competitive performance may be affected by the rate of recovery. The aim of the current study was to determine whether maximal oxygen uptake is associated with the rate of heart rate and oxygen uptake recovery in mountain bike athletes.

Material and methods. The study examined 29 mountain bikers, including members of the Polish National Team. These athletes specialised in cross-country Olympic (XCO) racing. After undergoing a graded stress test on a cycle ergometer, the subjects were divided into two groups: G1, consisting of athletes with higher aerobic capacity (n = 12; VO2max > 60 ml∙kg−1∙min−1), and G2, comprising athletes with lower aerobic capacity (n = 17; VO2max < 55 mL∙kg−1∙min−1). Heart rate and oxygen uptake recovery was measured after the graded stress test in a sitting position.

Results. HRmax values did not differ significantly between the two groups. HR1’, HR2’, and HR4’ values recorded for G1 were statistically significantly lower compared to those achieved by G2. %HR1’, %HR2’, %HR4’, and %HR5’ values were also significantly lower in G1 than in G2. No significant differences were found in oxygen uptake during recovery (VO2-1’, 2’, 3’, 4’, 5’) between the two groups. Significantly lower %VO2max-1’, %VO2max-2’, and %VO2max-5’ values were observed in G1 compared to those in G2. No significant correlations were found between VO2max per kilogram of body mass and the recovery efficiency index in either group. There was, however, a statistically significant correlation between VO2max and the recovery efficiency index (R = 0.52) in the entire group of athletes (n = 29).

Conclusion. The study showed that the work capacity of mountain bike athletes was associated with the rate of heart rate and oxygen uptake recovery.


Introduction. So far there have been few studies on the effect of interval training with active recovery aimed at increasing aerobic power on the physical capacity of long-distance runners. Unlike standard interval training, this particular type of interval training does not include passive rest periods but combines high-intensity training with low-intensity recovery periods. The aims of the study were to determine the effect of aerobic power training implemented in the form of interval training with active recovery on the physical capacity of amateur long-distance runners as well as to compare their results against those of a group of runners who trained in a traditional manner and only performed continuous training.

Material and methods. The study involved 12 recreational male long-distance runners, who were randomly divided into two groups, consisting of 6 persons each. Control group C performed continuous training 3 times a week (for 90 minutes, with approximately 65-85% VO2max). Experimental group E participated in one training session similar to the one implemented in group C and additionally performed interval training with active recovery twice a week. The interval training included a 20-minute warm-up and repeated running sprints of maximum intensity lasting 3 minutes (800-1,000 m). Between sprints, there was a 12-minute bout of running with an intensity of approximately 60-70% VO2max. The time of each repetition was measured, and the first one was treated as a benchmark in a given training unit. If the duration of a subsequent repetition was 5% shorter than that of the initial repetition, the subjects underwent a 15-minute cool-down period. A progressive treadmill test was carried out before and after the 7-week training period. The results were analysed using non-parametric statistical tests.

Results. VO2max increased significantly both in group E (p < 0.05; d = 0.86) and C (p < 0.05; d = 0.71), and there was an improvement in effort economy at submaximal intensity. Although the differences were not significant, a much greater change in the post-exercise concentrations of lactate and H+ ions was found in group E.

Conclusions. The study showed that interval training with active recovery increased VO2max in amateur runners with higher initial physical capacity and stimulated adaptation to metabolic acidosis more than continuous training.


Introduction. The aim of the study was to verify the influence of warm-up before a ramp incremental exercise test with linearly increasing loads on the maximal values of physiological variables which determine performance.

Material and methods. Thirteen healthy and physically active male students (age = 23.3 ± 1.5 years, body height = 179.1 ± 8.6 cm and body mass = 79.5 ± 9.1 kg) completed a cross-over comparison of two incremental exercise test interventions – an incremental exercise test with a 15-minute warm-up at an intensity of 60% of the maximal oxygen uptake obtained in the first incremental exercise test and the same test without warm-up.

Results. The peak values of physiological variables were statistically significantly higher for the incremental exercise test with warm-up, the differences between tests being 2.66% for peak power output (p = 0.039, t = 2.312, ES = 0.24), 7.75% for peak oxygen uptake (p = 0.000, t = 5.225, ES = 0.56), 7.72% for peak minute ventilation (p = 0.005, t = 3.346, ES = 0.53) and 1.62% for peak heart rate (p = 0.019, t = 2.690, ES = 0.60).

Conclusions. Warm-up before a ramp incremental exercise test resulted in higher values of maximal oxygen uptake, maximal minute ventilation, maximal heart rate and peak power output.


The aim of this study was to determine differences in glycolytic metabolite concentrations and work output in response to an all-out interval training session in 23 cyclists with at least 2 years of interval training experience (E) and those inexperienced (IE) in this form of training. The intervention involved subsequent sets of maximal intensity exercise on a cycle ergometer. Each set comprised four 30 s repetitions interspersed with 90 s recovery periods; sets were repeated when blood pH returned to 7.3. Measurements of post-exercise hydrogen (H+) and lactate ion (LA-) concentrations and work output were taken. The experienced cyclists performed significantly more sets of maximal efforts than the inexperienced athletes (5.8 ± 1.2 vs. 4.3 ± 0.9 sets, respectively). Work output decreased in each subsequent set in the IE group and only in the last set in the E group. Distribution of power output changed only in the E group; power decreased in the initial repetitions of set only to increase in the final repetitions. H+ concentration decreased in the third, penultimate, and last sets in the E group and in each subsequent set in the IE group. LA- decreased in the last set in both groups. In conclusion, the experienced cyclists were able to repeatedly induce elevated levels of lactic acidosis. Power output distribution changed with decreased acid–base imbalance. In this way, this group could compensate for a decreased anaerobic metabolism. The above factors allowed cyclists experienced in interval training to perform more sets of maximal exercise without a decrease in power output compared with inexperienced cyclists.