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THE JOURNAL OF SPORTS MEDICINE AND PHYSICAL FITNESS
Rivista di Medicina, Traumatologia e Psicologia dello Sport
Indexed/Abstracted in: Chemical Abstracts, CINAHL, Current Contents/Clinical Medicine, EMBASE, PubMed/MEDLINE, Science Citation Index Expanded (SciSearch), Scopus
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ORIGINAL ARTICLES EXCERCISE PHYSIOLOGY AND BIOMECHANICS
The Journal of Sports Medicine and Physical Fitness 2014 June;54(3):271-8
Blood lactate clearance after maximal exercise depends on active recovery intensity
Devlin J. 1, Paton B. 1, Poole L. 1, Sun W. 1, 2, Ferguson C. 1, 3, Wilson J. 1, Kemi O. J. 1 ✉
1 Institute of Cardiovascular and Medical Sciences; College of Medical, Veterinary, and Life Sciences; University of Glasgow, Glasgow, UK;
2 Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention, Beijing City, China;
3 Institute of Membrane and Systems Biology, Faculty of Biological Sciences, University of Leeds, Leeds, UK
AIM: High-intensity exercise is time-limited by onset of fatigue, marked by accumulation of blood lactate. This is accentuated at maximal, all-out exercise that rapidly accumulates high blood lactate. The optimal active recovery intensity for clearing lactate after such maximal, all-out exercise remains unknown. Thus, we studied the intensity-dependence of lactate clearance during active recovery after maximal exercise.
METHODS: We constructed a standardized maximal, all-out treadmill exercise protocol that predictably lead to voluntary exhaustion and blood lactate concentration >10 mM. Next, subjects ran series of all-out bouts that increased blood lactate concentration to 11.5±0.2 mM, followed by recovery exercises ranging 0% (passive)-100% of the lactate threshold.
RESULTS: Repeated measurements showed faster lactate clearance during active versus passive recovery (P<0.01), and that active recovery at 60-100% of lactate threshold was more efficient for lactate clearance than lower intensity recovery (P<0.05). Active recovery at 80% of lactate threshold had the highest rate of and shortest time constant for lactate clearance (P<0.05), whereas the response during the other intensities was graded (100%=60%>40%>passive recovery, P<0.05).
CONCLUSION: Active recovery after maximal all-out exercise clears accumulated blood lactate faster than passive recovery in an intensity-dependent manner, with maximum clearance occurring at active recovery of 80% of lactate threshold.