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Original articles  EXERCISE PHYSIOLOGY AND BIOMECHANICS


The Journal of Sports Medicine and Physical Fitness 2004 June;44(2):141-6

Copyright © 2009 EDIZIONI MINERVA MEDICA

language: English

Physiological changes following a 12 week gym based stair-climbing, elliptical trainer and treadmill running program in females

Egaña M., Donne B.

Department of Physology Trinity College Dublin, Dublin, Ireland


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Aim. Despite the growing popularity in recent years of the elliptical trainer aerobic exercise modality the physiological changes induced following a training program using elliptical trainers remains unknown. The present study investigated the metabolic and cardiorespiratory improvements following a 12-week aerobic training program using elliptical trainer, treadmill or stair-climbing modalities.
Methods. Twenty-two moderately active females (28.6±5.3 y, 1.65±0.05 m) were randomly assigned to treadmill running (n=7), elliptical trainer (n=8) or stair-climber (n=7) groups and trained 3 days.week-1 initially at 70-80% of maximum heart rate (HRmax) for 30 min, progressing to 80-90% HRmax for 40 min. Subjects performed incremental exercise to volitional exhaustion using an electronically loaded cycle ergometer before and upon completion of the program. In addition, subjects performed sub-maximal fixed load tests at 0, 4, 8 and 12 weeks, using ergometers specific to their exercise group.
Results. No significant inter-group differences were recorded for pre-training V.O2max or V.Emax. Significant (p<0.05) post-training increases in cycling V.O2max and V.Emax were observed for treadmill (mean±SEM, 40.7±2.2 vs 43.4±2.6 ml.kg-1.min-1 and 82.9±5.1 vs 90.2±6.4 l.min-1), elliptical trainer (36.9±2.5 vs 39.6±2.4 ml.kg-1.min-1 and 86.8±2.3 vs 92.5±4.1 l.min-1) and stair-climber (37.4±2.9 vs 39.2±3.1 ml.kg-1.min-1 and 95.9±5.8 vs 97.4±5.8 l.min-1) modalities, however, the increases were not significantly different between groups. For all groups, sub-maximal HR significantly decreased from week 0 to 4, and from week 4 to 8.
Conclusion. In moderately active females similar physiological improvements were observed using stair-climber, elliptical trainer and treadmill running when training volume and intensity were equivalent.

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