Publications by authors named "Roger Eston"

116 Publications

Physical Activity Intensity Cut-Points for Wrist-Worn GENEActiv in Older Adults.

Front Sports Act Living 2020 15;2:579278. Epub 2021 Jan 15.

Alliance for Research in Exercise, Nutrition and Activity (ARENA), University of South Australia, Adelaide, SA, Australia.

This study aims to (1) establish GENEActiv intensity cutpoints in older adults and (2) compare the classification accuracy between dominant (D) or non-dominant (ND) wrist, using both laboratory and free-living data. Thirty-one older adults participated in the study. They wore a GENEActiv Original on each wrist and performed nine activities of daily living. A portable gas analyzer was used to measure energy expenditure for each task. Testing was performed on two occasions separated by at least 8 days. Some of the same participants ( = 13) also wore one device on each wrist during 3 days of free-living. Receiver operating characteristic analysis was performed to establish the optimal cutpoints. For sedentary time, both dominant and non-dominant wrist had excellent classification accuracy (sensitivity 0.99 and 0.97, respectively; specificity 0.91 and 0.86, respectively). For Moderate to Vigorous Physical Activity (MVPA), the non-dominant wrist device had better accuracy (ND sensitivity: 0.90, specificity 0.79; D sensitivity: 0.90, specificity 0.64). The corresponding cutpoints for sedentary-to-light were 255 and 375 g · min (epoch independent: 42.5 and 62.5 mg), and those for the light-to-moderate were 588 and 555 g · min (epoch-independent: 98.0 and 92.5 mg) for the non-dominant and dominant wrist, respectively. For free-living data, the dominant wrist device resulted in significantly more sedentary time and significantly less light and MVPA time compared to the non-dominant wrist.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fspor.2020.579278DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7843957PMC
January 2021

Prediction of elite athletes' performance by analysis of peak-performance age and age-related performance progression.

Eur J Sport Sci 2021 Jan 24:1-14. Epub 2021 Jan 24.

Alliance for Research in Exercise, Nutrition and Activity (ARENA), University of South Australia, Adelaide, Australia.

The aim of this study was to analyse age-related performance progression and peak-performance age (PPA) in elite track and field athletes and to use a model to predict peak performance. Best performances of world-class athletes from ages 14 to 15 y up to and including the last Olympic year ( = 798), all-time top lists ( = 444), and world record-holders ( = 43) were considered in all 22 disciplines for men and 21 disciplines for women. A discipline/sex-specified model was used by applying dynamic panel data methods to analyze the performance trends. Profile analysis showed that PPA of all-time top list throwers was higher than middle-distance runners ( < 0.001), distance runners ( < 0.05), and jumpers ( < 0.05) in men and higher ( < 0.05) than middle-distance runners in women. Olympic year top list athletes showed that PPA of women throwers was higher than sprinters ( < 0.001) and middle-distance runners ( < 0.05), and PPA of women distance runners was higher ( < 0.05) than sprinters. In both all-time ( < 0.05) and Olympic year ( < 0.05) top lists, the PPA of men race walkers was higher than middle-distance runners. Performance over the preceding 1-2 years (in all disciplines), height (in Long Jump Men; Long Jump Women; Triple Jump Men) and weight (in Discus Throwing Men) indices, respectively, are important ( < 0.05) for predicting future records with different coefficients in different disciplines. The models provide a useful tool for coaches to predict peak performance records and PPA of their athletes which may be of benefit with goal-setting and evaluation of performance progression at different ages in track and field athletics.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/17461391.2020.1867240DOI Listing
January 2021

The Use of Ratings of Perceived Exertion in Children and Adolescents: A Scoping Review.

Sports Med 2021 Jan;51(1):33-50

UniSA Allied Health and Human Performance, Alliance for Research in Exercise, Nutrition and Activity (ARENA), University of South Australia, Adelaide, Australia.

In adults, ratings of perceived exertion (RPE) can be used to predict maximal oxygen uptake, estimate time to exhaustion, assess internal training load and regulate exercise intensity. However, the utility of RPE in children is less researched and therefore, warrants investigation. The purpose of this scoping review is to map out the literature around the application of RPE specifically during aerobic exercise in paediatric populations. Seven bibliographic databases were systematically searched. Grey literature searching and pearling of references were also conducted. To be included for the review, studies were required to comply with the following: (1) participants aged ≤ 18 years asymptomatic of any injuries, disabilities or illnesses; (2) applied RPE in aerobic exercise, testing and/or training; (3) included at least one measure of exercise intensity; and (4) be available in English. The search identified 22 eligible studies that examined the application of RPE in children. These studies involved a total of 718 participants across ten different countries. Nine different types of RPE scales were employed. Overall, the application of RPE in paediatric populations can be classified into three distinct themes: prediction of cardiorespiratory fitness/performance, monitoring internal training loads, and regulation of exercise intensity. The utility of RPE in paediatric populations remains unclear due to the small body of available research and inconsistencies between studies. However, findings from the included studies in this scoping review may show promise. Further research focussing on child-specific RPE scales across various sports, subgroups, and in field-based settings is needed.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s40279-020-01374-wDOI Listing
January 2021

Effect of Biological Maturation on Performance of the Athletic Ability Assessment in Australian Rules Football Players.

Int J Sports Physiol Perform 2020 May 1;16(1):28-36. Epub 2020 May 1.

Purpose: To determine the effect of biological maturation on athletic movement competency as measured using the Athletic Ability Assessment-6.

Methods: Fifty-two junior Australian Rules football players were split into 3 groups based on proximity to peak height velocity, while 46 senior players were split into 2 groups based on playing status. The subjects completed the Athletic Ability Assessment-6 (inclusive of the overhead squat, double lunge, single-leg Romanian dead lift, push-up, and chin-up). All subjects were filmed and retrospectively assessed by a single rater. A 1-way analysis of variance and effect-size statistics (Cohen d) with corresponding 90% confidence intervals were used to describe between-groups differences in the component movement scores. The statistical significance was set a priori at P < .05.

Results: There were significant between-groups differences for all component movements (P < .05). Post hoc testing revealed that older, more mature subjects possessed greater competency in all movements except the overhead squat. The effect sizes revealed predominantly moderate to very large differences in competency between the senior and junior groups (range of d [90% confidence interval]: 0.70 [0.06 to 1.30] to 3.01 [2.18 to 3.72]), with unclear to moderate differences found when comparing the 3 junior groups (0.08 [-0.50 to 0.65] to 0.97 [0.22-1.61]).

Conclusions: The findings suggest that biological maturation may be associated with changes in athletic movement competency in youth Australian Rules football players. Therefore, it is recommended that strength and conditioning coaches monitor maturity status when working with 12- to 15-y-old players. This can allow for a comparison of an individual's athletic movement competency to maturity-based standards and help guide developmentally appropriate training programs.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1123/ijspp.2019-0683DOI Listing
May 2020

Hamstring injuries and Australian Rules football: over-reliance on Nordic hamstring exercises as a preventive measure?

Open Access J Sports Med 2019 23;10:99-105. Epub 2019 Jul 23.

Alliance for Research in Exercise, Nutrition and Activity, University of South Australia, Adelaide, South Australia, Australia.

Nordic hamstring exercises (NHE) are promoted as an evidence-based strategy for reducing the prevalence of hamstring injuries in football, with a number of studies showing a significant reduction in hamstring injury rates following implementation of a NHE-based program. However, most of the research to date has been undertaken in soccer with less research carried out in other football codes. Despite this lack of relevant evidence, NHE has recently become popular as a preventative measure in Australian Rules football (ARF) teams; however, hamstring injuries remain high. This paper reviews the literature associated with the use of NHE for ARF players and questions the appropriateness of this exercise approach as a preventative measure for hamstring injuries in this sport. When considering the use of a preventative exercise program, such as the NHE, the specific risks associated with the sporting activity should be considered and the evidence reviewed in light of this. Whilst NHE provides an easy way to do eccentric exercises, the movement does not replicate what is needed in the real world for ARF and should therefore be included in a hamstring injury prevention program in this code with caution.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.2147/OAJSM.S212008DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6662172PMC
July 2019

Comparison of a Countermovement Jump Test and Submaximal Run Test to Quantify the Sensitivity for Detecting Practically Important Changes Within High-Performance Australian Rules Football.

Int J Sports Physiol Perform 2019 Apr 29:1-17. Epub 2019 Apr 29.

1 Alliance for Research in Exercise, Nutrition and Activity, Sansom Institute for Health Research, University of South Australia, Australia.

Purpose: The purpose of this study was to determine the typical variation of variables from a countermovement jump (CMJ) test and a submaximal run test (SRT), along with comparing the sensitivity of each test for the detection of practically important changes within high-performance Australian rules football (ARF) players.

Methods: 23 professional and semi-professional ARF players, performed six CMJs and three, eight-second 50-meter runs every 30 s (SRT), seven days apart. Absolute and trial-to-trial reliability was represented as a coefficient of variation (CV) ± 90% confidence intervals (CI). Test-retest reliability was examined using the magnitude of the difference (effect size (ES) ± 90% CI) from week 1 to week 2. The smallest worthwhile change (SWC) was calculated as 0.25 x SD.

Results: Good reliability (CVs = 6.6 - 9.3%) was determined for all variables except eccentric displacement (CV = 12.8%), with no clear changes observed in any variables between week 1 and week 2. All variables from the SRT possessed a CV < SWC, indicating an ability to detect practically important changes in performance. Only peak velocity from the CMJ test possessed a CV < SWC, exhibiting a limitation of this test in detecting practically meaningful changes within this environment.

Conclusions: The results suggest that while all variables possess acceptable reliability, a SRT might offer to be a more sensitive monitoring tool than a CMJ test within high-performance ARF, due to its greater ability for detecting practically important changes in performance.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1123/ijspp.2019-0150DOI Listing
April 2019

The effects of fatigue on the running profile of elite team sport athletes. A systematic review and meta-analysis.

J Sports Med Phys Fitness 2019 Aug 12;59(8):1328-1338. Epub 2019 Feb 12.

Alliance for Research in Exercise, Nutrition and Activity, University of South Australia, Adelaide, Australia.

Introduction: With the underlying mechanisms of fatigue shown to be task-specific, gaining an understanding of changes within the running profile due to fatigue may provide a greater task-specific method for monitoring neuromuscular fatigue (NMF) in elite team sport athletes. This review aimed to identify, review and summarize the literature to understand the effects of fatigue on the running profile of elite team sport athletes.

Evidence Acquisition: MEDLINE, SPORTDiscus, EMBASE and CINAHL were searched. To manage heterogeneity in athlete characteristics and sport demands, studies were limited to elite male field/court team sports, in which changes in running, gait or stride characteristics were assessed.

Evidence Synthesis: Thirteen studies were included in the analysis with changes in sprint time, kinematic variables; contact time, center of mass vertical displacement and vertical stiffness, GPS accelerometer vector variables; z and y, and mechanical parameters; velocity and V0, all shown to be sensitive measures of fatigue. Due to having at least three sets of data points, meta-analysis was run for sprint time, with results showing a significant increase immediately postexercise (effect size [ES]±95% confidence interval [CI]; 1.67±1.61, P=0.04), but no change 24 hours postexercise (ES±95% CI; 0.93±3.21, P=0.57).

Conclusions: The findings indicate that fatigue has a negative impact on the running profile in elite team sport athletes, offering an alternative task-specific measure of monitoring NMF in this population. However, due to large discrepancies in protocols, future research is required to allow greater uniformity in variables and methods.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.23736/S0022-4707.19.09356-3DOI Listing
August 2019

Peak oxygen uptake measured during a perceptually-regulated exercise test is reliable in community-based manual wheelchair users.

J Sports Sci 2019 Mar 14;37(6):701-707. Epub 2018 Dec 14.

a The Peter Harrison Centre for Disability Sport, School for Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences , Loughborough University , Loughborough , UK.

This study compares test-retest reliability and peak exercise responses from ramp-incremented (RAMP) and maximal perceptually-regulated (PRET) exercise tests during arm crank exercise in individuals reliant on manual wheelchair propulsion (MWP). Ten untrained participants completed four trials over 2-weeks (two RAMP (0-40 W + 5-10 W · min) trials and two PRET. PRET consisted of five, 2-min stages performed at Ratings of Perceived Exertion (RPE) 11, 13, 15, 17 and 20). Participants freely changed the power output to match the required RPE. Gas exchange variables, heart rate, power output, RPE and affect were determined throughout trials. The V̇O from RAMP (14.8 ± 5.5 ml · kg · min) and PRET (13.9 ± 5.2 ml · kg · min) trials were not different (P = 0.08). Measurement error was 1.7 and 2.2 ml · kg · min and coefficient of variation 5.9% and 8.1% for measuring V̇O from RAMP and PRET, respectively. Affect was more positive at RPE 13 (P = 0.02), 15 (P = 0.01) and 17 (P = 0.01) during PRET. Findings suggest that PRET can be used to measure V̇O in participants reliant on MWP and leads to a more positive affective response compared to RAMP.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/02640414.2018.1522941DOI Listing
March 2019

Physiological and Perceived Exertion Responses during Exercise: Effect of β-blockade.

Med Sci Sports Exerc 2019 04;51(4):782-791

Alliance for Research in Exercise, Nutrition and Activity, School of Health Sciences, University of South Australia, Adelaide, South Australia, AUSTRALIA.

Purpose: This study investigated the effect of β-blockade on physiological and perceived exertion (RPE) responses during incremental treadmill exercise.

Methods: Sixteen healthy participants (n = 8 men; age, 25.3 ± 4.6 yr) performed a maximal treadmill exercise test after ingestion of 100 mg metoprolol or placebo, with a double-blind, randomized, and counterbalanced design. Heart rate (HR), ventilatory, and gas exchange variables were measured continuously, and participants reported RPE at the end of each minute. Physiological and RPE responses during each condition were compared at the ventilatory threshold (VT), respiratory compensation point, and at maximal exercise using repeated-measures ANOVA. Linear regression modeled relationships between perceived exertion and physiological variables.

Results: The HR and V˙O2 at the VT, respiratory compensation point, and maximal exercise were all significantly lower after β-blockade (P < 0.05). However, when standardized to within condition peak values, differences were no longer significant. The RPE associated with VT was higher after β-blockade (12.9 ± 1.0 vs 12.3 ± 1.2, P < 0.05) but lower at maximal exercise (19.1 ± 0.6 vs 19.4 ± 0.5, P < 0.05). Increases in RPE relative to HR were greater after β-blockade and remained significant when expressed relative to peak HR. There was no difference in the growth of the relationship between RPE and V˙O2 across conditions, although the origin of the relationship was higher with β-blockade.

Conclusions: Although β-blockade resulted in a significant reduction in exercising HR and V˙O2, the RPE for a given relative intensity remained unchanged. The relationship between RPE and V˙O2 was not affected by β-blockade. The results provide evidence that RPE is a useful and reliable measure for exercise testing and prescription in patients prescribed β-blockade therapy.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1249/MSS.0000000000001845DOI Listing
April 2019

A Novel Method of Assessment for Monitoring Neuromuscular Fatigue in Australian Rules Football Players.

Int J Sports Physiol Perform 2019 May 21;14(5):598-605. Epub 2019 Apr 21.

To compare the sensitivity of a submaximal run test (SRT) with a countermovement-jump test (CMJ) to provide an alternative method of measuring neuromuscular fatigue (NMF) in high-performance sport. A total of 23 professional and semiprofessional Australian rules football players performed an SRT and CMJ test prematch and 48 and 96 h postmatch. Variables from accelerometers recorded during the SRT were player load 1D up (vertical vector), player load 1D side (mediolateral vector), and player load 1D forward (anteroposterior vector). Meaningful difference was examined through magnitude-based inferences (effect size [ES]), with reliability assessed as typical error of measurements expressed as coefficient of variance. A small decrease in CMJ height, ES -0.43 ± 0.39 (likely), was observed 48 h postmatch before returning to baseline 96 h postmatch. This was accompanied by corresponding moderate decreases in the SRT variables player load 1D up, ES -0.60 ± 0.51 (likely), and player load 1D side, ES -0.74 ± 0.57 (likely), 48 h postmatch before also returning to prematch baseline. The results suggest that in the presence of NMF, players use an alternative running profile to produce the same external output (ie, time). This indicates that changes in accelerometer variables during an SRT can be used as an alternative method of measuring NMF in high-performance Australian rules football and provides a flexible option for monitoring changes in the recovery phase postmatch.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1123/ijspp.2018-0253DOI Listing
May 2019

Biomarkers of Physiological Responses to Periods of Intensified, Non-Resistance-Based Exercise Training in Well-Trained Male Athletes: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis.

Sports Med 2018 Nov;48(11):2517-2548

Alliance for Research in Exercise, Nutrition and Activity (ARENA), Sansom Institute for Health Research and School of Health Sciences, University of South Australia, GPO Box 2471, Adelaide, SA, 5001, Australia.

Background: Intensified training is important for inducing adaptations to improve athletic performance, but detrimental performance effects can occur if prescribed inappropriately. Monitoring biomarker responses to training may inform changes in training load to optimize performance.

Objective: This systematic review and meta-analysis aimed to identify biomarkers associated with altered exercise performance following intensified training.

Methods: Embase, MEDLINE, CINAHL, Scopus and SPORTDiscus were searched up until September 2017. Included articles were peer reviewed and reported on biomarkers collected at rest in well-trained male athletes before and after periods of intensified training.

Results: The full text of 161 articles was reviewed, with 59 included (708 participants) and 42 (550 participants) meta-analysed. In total, 118 biomarkers were evaluated, with most being cellular communication and immunity markers (n = 54). Studies most frequently measured cortisol (n = 34), creatine kinase (n = 25) and testosterone (n = 20). Many studies reported decreased immune cell counts following intensified training, irrespective of performance. Moreover, reduced performance was associated with a decrease in neutrophils (d = - 0.57; 95% confidence interval (CI) - 1.07 to - 0.07) and glutamine (d = - 0.37; 95% CI - 0.43 to - 0.31) and an increase in urea concentration (d = 0.80; 95% CI 0.30 to 1.30). In contrast, increased performance was associated with an increased testosterone:cortisol ratio (d = 0.89; 95% CI 0.54 to 1.24). All remaining biomarkers showed no consistent patterns of change with performance.

Conclusions: Many biomarkers were altered with intensified training but not in a manner related to changes in exercise performance. Neutrophils, glutamine, urea and the testosterone:cortisol ratio exhibited some evidence of directional changes that corresponded with performance changes therefore indicating potential to track performance. Additional investigations of the potential for these markers to track altered performance are warranted.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s40279-018-0969-2DOI Listing
November 2018

What is the effect of aerobic exercise intensity on cardiorespiratory fitness in those undergoing cardiac rehabilitation? A systematic review with meta-analysis.

Br J Sports Med 2019 Nov 18;53(21):1341-1351. Epub 2018 Aug 18.

Alliance for Research in Exercise, Nutrition and Activity (ARENA), University of South Australia, Adelaide, South Australia, Australia.

Objective: Assess the role of exercise intensity on changes in cardiorespiratory fitness (CRF) in patients with cardiac conditions attending exercise-based cardiac rehabilitation.

Design: Systematic review with meta-analysis.

Data Sources: MEDLINE, Embase, CINAHL, SPORTDiscus, PsycINFO and Web of Science.

Eligibility Criteria For Selection: Studies assessing change in CRF (reported as peak oxygen uptake; V̇O) in patients post myocardial infarction and revascularisation, following exercise-based cardiac rehabilitation. Studies establishing V̇O via symptom-limited exercise test with ventilatory gas analysis and reported intensity of exercise during rehabilitation were included. Studies with mean ejection fraction <40% were excluded.

Results: 128 studies including 13 220 patients were included. Interventions were classified as moderate, moderate-to-vigorous or vigorous intensity based on published recommendations. Moderate and moderate-to-vigorous-intensity interventions were associated with a moderate increase in V̇O (standardised mean difference±95% CI=0.94±0.30 and 0.93±0.17, respectively), and vigorous-intensity exercise with a large increase (1.10±0.25). Moderate and vigorous-intensity interventions were associated with moderate improvements in V̇O (0.63±0.34 and 0.93±0.20, respectively), whereas moderate-to-vigorous-intensity interventions elicited a large effect (1.27±0.75). Large heterogeneity among studies was observed for all analyses. Subgroup analyses yielded statistically significant, but inconsistent, improvements in CRF.

Conclusion: Engagement in exercise-based cardiac rehabilitation was associated with significant improvements in both absolute and relative V̇O. Although exercise of vigorous intensity produced the greatest pooled effect for change in relative V̇O, differences in pooled effects between intensities could not be considered clinically meaningful.

Registration: Prospero CRD42016035638.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bjsports-2018-099153DOI Listing
November 2019

Relationships Between Model-Predicted and Actual Match-Play Exercise-Intensity Performance in Professional Australian Footballers During a Preseason Training Macrocycle.

Int J Sports Physiol Perform 2019 Feb 3;14(2):232-238. Epub 2019 Jan 3.

Purpose: To assess and compare the validity of internal and external Australian football (AF) training-load measures for predicting preseason variation of match-play exercise intensity (MEI sim/min) using a variable dose-response model.

Methods: A total of 21 professional male AF players completed an 18-wk preseason macrocycle. Preseason internal training load was quntified using the session rating-of-perceived-exertion method (sRPE) and external load from satellite (as distance [Dist] and high-speed distance [HS Dist]) and accelerometer (Player Load [PL]) data. Using a training-impulse (TRIMPs) calculation, external load expressed in arbitrary units was represented as TRIMPs, TRIMPs, and TRIMPs. Preseason training load and MEI sim/min data were applied to a variable dose-response model, which provided estimates of MEI sim/min. Model estimates of MEI sim/min were correlated with actual measures from each match-play drill performed during the preseason macrocycle. Magnitude-based inferences (effect size [90% confidence interval]) were calculated to determine practical differences in the precision of MEI sim/min estimates using each of the internal- and external-load inputs.

Results: Estimates of MEI sim/min demonstrated very large and large associations with actual MEI sim/min with models constructed from external and internal training inputs (r [90% confidence interval]; TRIMPs .73 [.72-.74], TRIMPs .72 [.71-.73], and sRPE .67 [.56-.78]). There were trivial differences in the precision of MEI sim/min estimates between models constructed from TRIMPs and TRIMPs and between internal input methods.

Conclusions: Variable dose-response models from multiple training-load inputs can predict the within-individual variation of MEI sim/min across an entire preseason macrocycle. Models informed by external training inputs (TRIMPs and TRIMPs) exhibited predictive power comparable to those of sRPE models.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1123/ijspp.2017-0752DOI Listing
February 2019

Combining perceptual regulation and exergaming for exercise prescription in low-active adults with and without cognitive impairment.

BMC Sports Sci Med Rehabil 2018 30;10. Epub 2018 Jan 30.

1Alliance for Research in Exercise Nutrition and Activity (ARENA), Sansom Institute for Health Research, School of Health Science, University of South Australia, GPO Box 2471, 108 North Terrace, Adelaide, SA 5001 Australia.

 background: Exercise adherence in already low-active older adults with and without mild cognitive impairment (MCI) remains low. Perceptual regulation and exergaming may facilitate future exercise behaviour by improving the affective experience, however evidence that this population can perceptually regulate is lacking. To explore this, we investigated 1) perceptual regulation of exercise intensity during either exergaming or regular ergometer cycling and 2) explored affective responses.

Methods: Thirty-two low active older adults (73.9 ± 7.3 years,  = 16, 8 females) with or without MCI (70.9 ± 5.5 years,  = 16, 11 females) participated in a sub-maximal fitness assessment to determine ventilatory threshold (VT) and two experimental sessions (counterbalanced: exergaming or regular ergometer cycling). Experimental sessions consisted 21-min of continuous cycling with 7-min at each: RPE 9, 11 and 13. Oxygen consumption (VO), heart rate (HR), and affect (Feeling Scale) were obtained throughout the exercise.

Results: VO ( < 0.01) and HR ( < 0.01) increased linearly with RPE, but were not significantly different between exercise modes or cognitive groups. At RPE 13, participants worked above VT in both modes (exergaming: 115.7 ± 27.3; non-exergaming 114.1 ± 24.3 VO (%VT)). Regardless of cognitive group, affect declined significantly as RPE increased ( < 0.01). However on average, affect remained pleasant throughout and did not differ between exercise modes or cognitive groups.

Conclusions: These results suggest low-active older adults can perceptually regulate exercise intensity, regardless of cognition or mode. At RPE 13, participants regulated above VT, at an intensity that improves cardiorespiratory fitness long-term, and affect remained positive in the majority of participants, which may support long-term physical activity adherence.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s13102-018-0091-7DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5791381PMC
January 2018

Exergaming: Feels good despite working harder.

PLoS One 2017 23;12(10):e0186526. Epub 2017 Oct 23.

Alliance for Research in Exercise, Nutrition and Activity (ARENA), Sansom Institute for Health Research, School of Health Sciences, University of South Australia, Adelaide, South Australia.

Strategies to encourage exercise have led to research on cycle ergometer 'exergaming', as a means of enhancing exercise enjoyment. This research has typically prescribed the exercise intensity and used one exercise mode. The aim of this study was to compare self-selected exercise intensity on a cycle ergometer with and without exergaming modes activated. A total of 20 participants aged between 18-40 years (M = 24.2 ± 5.9) completed a sub-maximal exercise test. Participants returned two days later to complete one 45 minute session of self-selected exercise with 15 minutes in each of 'control' (standard ergometer), 'track', and 'game' modes, with order randomized. Heart rate, work rate, perceived exertion, and affective valence were recorded during exercise. Dissociation and enjoyment were recorded in the rest interval between each mode. Participants exercised above ventilatory threshold (VT) in all three modes (track, M = 9.5 ± 12%; game, M = 6.2 ± 12%; and control, M = 4.4 ± 14% above VT) and at higher work rates (P < 0.05) exergaming (track, M = 94.5 ± 27.9; game, M = 96.2 ± 32.8 watts) than control (M = 86.6 ± 26.5 watts). Despite exercising at a higher intensity, participants perceived exercise during the exergaming modes to be most pleasant (P < 0.01), with greater enjoyment (P < 0.01) and dissociation (P < 0.01) in the game than track mode, and both modes higher on these variables than the control mode. Findings support the use of exergaming as a strategy to encourage individuals to exercise, with participants choosing to work harder physiologically, but reporting more positive psychological responses during and following the exercise.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0186526PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5653295PMC
November 2017

Inter- and Intra-rater Reliability of the Athletic Ability Assessment in Subelite Australian Rules Football Players.

J Strength Cond Res 2019 Jan;33(1):125-138

School of Health Sciences, University of South Australia, Adelaide, Australia.

Rogers, DK, McKeown, I, Parfitt, G, Burgess, D, and Eston, RG. Inter- and intra-rater reliability of the athletic ability assessment in subelite Australian rules football players. J Strength Cond Res 33(1): 125-138, 2019-The aim of this study was to determine the inter- and intra-rater rater reliability of the Athletic Ability Assessment (AAA) in subelite Australian Rules football (ARF) players. Eighteen male ARF players completed the AAA movement assessment (overhead squat, double lunge [left and right], single-leg Romanian deadlift [left and right], chin-up and push-up), on 2 occasions separated by 1 week. During the first movement assessment, players were filmed in the frontal and sagittal planes. Ten raters took part in the study (1 experienced rater and 9 novices) and were assigned in a quasirandom manner, to complete either (a) real-time assessment on 2 occasions, (b) real-time assessment on 1 occasion, or (c) video-based assessment on 2 occasions. When assessed in real-time, of the 7 component movements of the AAA, raters registered moderate or greater intrarater agreement on between 2 and 5 occasions. Intraclass correlation coefficients (ICCs) of between 0.50 and 0.61 for the AAA total score indicated poor real-time intrarater reliability for this variable. When assessed by video-recording, raters registered moderate or greater intrarater agreement on between 6 and 7 occasions. The ICC for total score ranged between 0.60 and 0.93. Overall poor interrater reliability was evident for AAA component movements regardless of whether it was assessed in real-time or from video. Findings suggest the AAA is most reliably used when assessed through video. It is recommended that if comparison between multiple raters is desired, a stringent training process be applied so that the interpretation of AAA scoring criteria is standardized across raters.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1519/JSC.0000000000002175DOI Listing
January 2019

Relationships Between Model Estimates and Actual Match-Performance Indices in Professional Australian Footballers During an In-Season Macrocycle.

Int J Sports Physiol Perform 2018 Mar 9;13(3):339-346. Epub 2018 Mar 9.

Purpose: To assess and compare the validity of internal and external Australian football (AF) training-load measures for predicting match exercise intensity (MEI/min) and player-rank score (PR) using a variable dose-response model.

Methods: A cohort of 25 professional AF players (23 ± 3 y, 188.3 ± 7.2 cm, 87.7 ± 8.4 kg) completed a 24-wk in-season macrocycle. In-season internal training and match load were quantified using session rating of perceived exertion (sRPE) and external load from satellite and accelerometer data. Using a training-impulse (TRIMP) calculation, external load (au) was represented as distance (TRIMP), distance ≥4.16 m/s (TRIMP), and PlayerLoad (TRIMP). In-season training load, MEI/min, and PR were applied to a variable dose-response model, which provided estimates of MEI/min and PR. Predicted MEI/min and PR were correlated with actual measures from each match. The magnitude of the difference between MEI/min and PR estimates for each model input and the difference between the precision of internal and external load measures to predict MEI/min and PR were calculated using the effect size ± 90% confidence interval (CI).

Results: Estimates of MEI/min demonstrated very large associations with actual MEI/min (r, 90% CI) (eg, TRIMP .76 ± .13, and sRPE .73 ± .14). Estimates of PR demonstrated associations of large magnitude with actual PR using the same inputs. Precision of actual MEI/min was lowest using sRPE compared with (ES ± 90% CI) TRIMP, -.67 ± .34, and TRIMP, -.91 ± .39. There were trivial and unclear differences in the precision of PR estimates between TRIMP and sRPE inputs.

Conclusions: Dose-response models from multiple training-load inputs can predict within-individual variation of MEI/min and PR. Internal and external training-input methods exhibited comparable predictive power.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1123/ijspp.2017-0026DOI Listing
March 2018

Assessment of peak oxygen uptake during handcycling: Test-retest reliability and comparison of a ramp-incremented and perceptually-regulated exercise test.

PLoS One 2017 13;12(7):e0181008. Epub 2017 Jul 13.

The Peter Harrison Centre for Disability Sport, School for Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences, Loughborough University, Loughborough, United Kingdom.

Purpose: To examine the reliability of a perceptually-regulated maximal exercise test (PRETmax) to measure peak oxygen uptake ([Formula: see text]) during handcycle exercise and to compare peak responses to those derived from a ramp-incremented protocol (RAMP).

Methods: Twenty recreationally active individuals (14 male, 6 female) completed four trials across a 2-week period, using a randomised, counterbalanced design. Participants completed two RAMP protocols (20 W·min-1) in week 1, followed by two PRETmax in week 2, or vice versa. The PRETmax comprised five, 2-min stages clamped at Ratings of Perceived Exertion (RPE) 11, 13, 15, 17 and 20. Participants changed power output (PO) as often as required to maintain target RPE. Gas exchange variables (oxygen uptake, carbon dioxide production, minute ventilation), heart rate (HR) and PO were collected throughout. Differentiated RPE were collected at the end of each stage throughout trials.

Results: For relative [Formula: see text], coefficient of variation (CV) was equal to 4.1% and 4.8%, with ICC(3,1) of 0.92 and 0.85 for repeated measures from PRETmax and RAMP, respectively. Measurement error was 0.15 L·min-1 and 2.11 ml·kg-1·min-1 in PRETmax and 0.16 L·min-1 and 2.29 ml·kg-1·min-1 during RAMP for determining absolute and relative [Formula: see text], respectively. The difference in [Formula: see text] between PRETmax and RAMP was tending towards statistical significance (26.2 ± 5.1 versus 24.3 ± 4.0 ml·kg-1·min-1, P = 0.055). The 95% LoA were -1.9 ± 4.1 (-9.9 to 6.2) ml·kg-1·min-1.

Conclusion: The PRETmax can be used as a reliable test to measure [Formula: see text] during handcycle exercise in recreationally active participants. Whilst PRETmax tended towards significantly greater [Formula: see text] values than RAMP, the difference is smaller than measurement error of determining [Formula: see text] from PRETmax and RAMP.
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http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0181008PLOS
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5509239PMC
September 2017

Statistical model ignores 'age', products of peak Q and a-vΟ₂ difference greatly exceed V̇Ο₂max and different ergometers confound validity.

Eur J Appl Physiol 2017 May 28;117(5):1053-1054. Epub 2017 Feb 28.

Sansom Institute for Health Research and School of Nursing and Midwifery, University of South Australia, City East Campus, GPO Box 2471, Adelaide, SA, 5000, Australia.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00421-017-3577-1DOI Listing
May 2017

Accelerometer wear-site detection: When one site does not suit all, all of the time.

J Sci Med Sport 2017 Apr 21;20(4):368-372. Epub 2016 May 21.

Alliance for Research in Exercise, Nutrition and Activity (ARENA), University of South Australia, Australia.

Objectives: Choice of accelerometer wear-site may facilitate greater compliance in research studies. We aimed to test whether a simple method could automatically discriminate whether an accelerometer was worn on the hip or wrist from free-living data.

Design: Cross-sectional.

Methods: Twenty-two 10-12y old children wore a GENEActiv at the wrist and at the hip for 7-days. The angle between the forearm and the total acceleration vector for the wrist-worn monitor and between the pelvis and the total acceleration vector for the hip-worn monitor (i.e. the angle between the Y-axis component of the acceleration and the total acceleration vector) was calculated for each 5s epoch. The standard deviation of this angle (SDangle) was calculated over time for the wrist-worn and hip-worn monitor for windows of varying lengths. We hypothesised that the wrist angle would be more variable than the hip angle.

Results: Wear site could be discriminated based on SDangle; the shorter the time window the lower the optimal threshold and Area under the Receiver-Operating-Characteristic curve (AUROC) for discrimination of wear-site (AUROC=0.833 (1min) - 0.952 (12h)). Classification accuracy was good for windows of 8min (sensitivity=90%, specificity=87%, AUROC=0.92) and plateaued for windows of ≥60min (sensitivity and specificity >90%, AUROC=0.95-0.96).

Conclusions: We have presented a robust, computationally simple method that detects whether an accelerometer is being worn on the hip or wrist from 8 to 60min of data. This facilitates the use of wear-site specific algorithms to analyse accelerometer data.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jsams.2016.04.013DOI Listing
April 2017

Validity of a perceptually-regulated step test protocol for assessing cardiorespiratory fitness in healthy adults.

Eur J Appl Physiol 2016 Dec 5;116(11-12):2337-2344. Epub 2016 Oct 5.

Alliance for Research in Exercise, Nutrition and Activity, Sansom Institute for Health Research, Universitiy of South Australia, Adelaide, Australia.

Purpose: To determine whether maximal oxygen uptake (VOmax) could be predicted accurately and reliably from a 2-step, perceptually-regulated exercise test (PRET) in healthy adults.

Methods: Sixteen participants (31.7 ± 11.3 years, 3 females) completed three PRETs (separated by 24-72 h) and one maximal, perceptually-regulated, graded exercise test (PRETmax) on a motorized treadmill. Oxygen uptake (VO) and heart rate (HR) were recorded during each test. VO values for RPE range 9-15 were extrapolated to RPE 20 and age-predicted maximal HR (HRmax) using individual linear regression analysis to predict VOmax values compared to measured VOmax.

Results: VO and HR values were consistent between each of four RPE levels of the PRET. ICC values ranged between 0.76 and 0.85. Predicted VOmax from both methods were lower than measured VOmax (p < 0.01). Limits of agreement (LoA) for measured (41.4 ± 5.3 ml kg min) versus predicted VOmax from each of the three PRETs using RPE20 were -1.2 ± 15.6, -1.0 ± 7.2 and -2.1 ± 5.5 and for HRmax were -1.8 ± 4.2; -2.6 ± 4.2 and -2.4 ± 4.4 ml kg min for PRET 1, 2 and 3, respectively.

Conclusions: The step PRET elicited significant and reliable increases in VO across the four RPE levels, but under-estimated treadmill VOmax. However, there was better agreement between measured and predicted VOmax when extrapolated to HRmax. As evidence indicates the underestimation of VOmax is explained by the difference in the mode of exercise, the step PRET provides a simple and convenient test of cardiorespiratory fitness.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00421-016-3485-9DOI Listing
December 2016

Author's Reply to Sabour and Ghassemi "Submaximal Step Tests to Estimate Maximal Oxygen Uptake in Healthy Adults: Methodological Issues About Validity and Reliability".

Sports Med 2016 Sep;46(9):1383-4

Alliance for Research in Exercise, Nutrition and Activity, Sansom Institute for Health Research, University of South Australia, Adelaide, SA, Australia.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s40279-016-0603-0DOI Listing
September 2016

Author's Reply to Will G. Hopkins: "Submaximal, Perceptually Regulated Exercise Testing Predicts Maximal Oxygen Uptake: A Meta-Analysis Study".

Sports Med 2016 08;46(8):1197-8

Alliance for Research in Exercise, Nutrition and Physical Activity, Sansom Institute for Health Research, University of South Australia, Adelaide, Australia.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s40279-016-0557-2DOI Listing
August 2016

A comparison of head motion and prefrontal haemodynamics during upright and recumbent cycling exercise.

Clin Physiol Funct Imaging 2017 Nov 27;37(6):723-729. Epub 2016 Apr 27.

Alliance for Research in Exercise, Nutrition and Activity (ARENA), Sansom Institute for Health Research, School of Health Sciences, University of South Australia, Adelaide, South Australia, Australia.

The aim of this observational study was to compare head motion and prefrontal haemodynamics during exercise using three commercial cycling ergometers. Participants (n = 12) completed an incremental exercise test to exhaustion during upright, recumbent and semi-recumbent cycling. Head motion (using accelerometry), physiological data (oxygen uptake, end-tidal carbon dioxide [P CO ] and heart rate) and changes in prefrontal haemodynamics (oxygenation, deoxygenation and blood volume using near infrared spectroscopy [NIRS]) were recorded. Despite no difference in oxygen uptake and heart rate, head motion was higher and P CO was lower during upright cycling at maximal exercise (P<0·05). Analyses of covariance (covariates: head motion P>0·05; P CO , P<0·01) revealed that prefrontal oxygenation was higher during semi-recumbent than recumbent cycling and deoxygenation and blood volume were higher during upright than recumbent and semi-recumbent cycling (respectively; P<0·05). This work highlights the robustness of the utility of NIRS to head motion and describes the potential postural effects upon the prefrontal haemodynamic response during upright and recumbent cycling exercise.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/cpf.12365DOI Listing
November 2017

Prediction of peak oxygen uptake in children using submaximal ratings of perceived exertion during treadmill exercise.

Eur J Appl Physiol 2016 Jun 22;116(6):1189-95. Epub 2016 Apr 22.

Faculty of Business, Law and Sport, University of Winchester, Winchester, UK.

Purpose: This study assessed the utility of the Children's Effort Rating Table (CERT) and the Eston-Parfitt (EP) Scale in estimating peak oxygen uptake ([Formula: see text]) in children, during cardiopulmonary exercise testing (CPET) on a treadmill.

Methods: Fifty healthy children (n = 21 boys; 9.4 ± 0.9 years) completed a continuous, incremental protocol until the attainment of [Formula: see text]. Oxygen uptake ([Formula: see text]) was measured continuously, and ratings of perceived exertion (RPE) were estimated at the end of each exercise stage using the CERT and the EP Scale. Ratings up to- and including RPE 5 and 7, from both the CERT (CERT 5, CERT 7) and EP Scale (EP 5, EP 7), were linearly regressed against the corresponding [Formula: see text], to both maximal RPE (CERT 10, EP 10) and terminal RPE (CERT 9, EP 9).

Results: There were no differences between measured- and predicted [Formula: see text] from CERT 5, CERT 7, EP 5 and EP 7 when extrapolated to either CERT 9 or EP 9 (P > 0.05). Pearson's correlations of r = 0.64-0.86 were observed between measured- and predicted [Formula: see text], for all perceptual ranges investigated. However, only EP 7 provided a small difference when considering the standard error of estimate, suggesting that the prediction of [Formula: see text] from EP 7 would be within 10 % of measured [Formula: see text].

Conclusions: Although robust estimates of [Formula: see text] may be elicited using both the CERT and EP Scale during a single CPET with children, the most accurate estimates of [Formula: see text] occur when extrapolating from EP 7.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00421-016-3377-zDOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4875070PMC
June 2016

Type of Ground Surface during Plyometric Training Affects the Severity of Exercise-Induced Muscle Damage.

Sports (Basel) 2016 Mar 1;4(1). Epub 2016 Mar 1.

Department of Exercise Physiology, Faculty of Sport Sciences, University of Guilan, Rasht 1438, Iran.

The purpose of this study was to compare the changes in the symptoms of exercise-induced muscle damage from a bout of plyometric exercise (PE; 10 × 10 vertical jumps) performed in aquatic, sand and firm conditions. Twenty-four healthy college-aged men were randomly assigned to one of three groups: Aquatic (AG, = 8), Sand (SG, = 8) and Firm (FG, = 8). The AG performed PE in an aquatic setting with a depth of ~130 cm. The SG performed PE on a dry sand surface at a depth of 20 cm, and the FG performed PE on a 10-cm-thick wooden surface. Plasma creatine kinase (CK) activity, delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS), knee range of motion (KROM), maximal isometric voluntary contraction (MIVC) of the knee extensors, vertical jump (VJ) and 10-m sprint were measured before and 24, 48 and 72 h after the PE. Compared to baseline values, FG showed significantly ( < 0.05) greater changes in CK, DOMS, and VJ at 24 until 48 h. The MIVC decreased significantly for the SG and FG at 24 until 48 h post-exercise in comparison to the pre-exercise values. There were no significant ( > 0.05) time or group by time interactions in KROM. In the 10-m sprint, all the treatment groups showed significant ( < 0.05) changes compared to pre-exercise values at 24 h, and there were no significant ( > 0.05) differences between groups. The results indicate that PE in an aquatic setting and on a sand surface induces less muscle damage than on a firm surface. Therefore, training in aquatic conditions and on sand may be beneficial for the improvement of performance, with a concurrently lower risk of muscle damage and soreness.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/sports4010015DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5968928PMC
March 2016

Brief Heat Training: No Improvement of the Lactate Threshold in Mild Conditions.

Int J Sports Physiol Perform 2016 Nov 24;11(8):1029-1037. Epub 2016 Aug 24.

Purpose: Athletes often seek the minimum required time that might elicit a physiological or performance change. It is reasonable to suggest that heat training may improve aerobic-based performance in mild conditions. Therefore, rather than providing a traditional heat-exposure stimulus (ie, 7-10 × 60-100 min sessions), the current article details 2 studies that aimed to determine the effect of brief (≤240 min exposure) heat training on the second lactate threshold (LT) in mild conditions.

Methods: Forty-one participants completed 5 (study 1, n = 18) or 4 (study 2, n = 23) perceptually regulated treadmill exercise training sessions in 35°C and 30% relative humidity (RH) (experimental group) or 19°C and 30% RH (control group). Preincremental and postincremental exercise testing occurred in mild conditions (19°C and 30% RH). Linear mixed-effects models analyzed the change in LT. Results Heat training did not substantially change LT in either study 1 (+1.2%, d = 0.38, P = .248) or study 2 (+1.9%, d = 0.42, P = .163). LT was not substantially changed in the control group in study 1 (+1.3%, d = 0.43, P = .193), but a within-group change was evident in study 2 (+2.3%, d = 1.04, P = .001).

Conclusions: Brief heat training was inadequate to improve the speed at LT in mild conditions more than comparable training in mild conditions. The brief nature of the heattraining protocol did not allow adaptations to develop to the extent required to potentially confer a performance advantage in an environment that is less thermally stressful than the training conditions.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1123/ijspp.2015-0601DOI Listing
November 2016

Submaximal, Perceptually Regulated Exercise Testing Predicts Maximal Oxygen Uptake: A Meta-Analysis Study.

Sports Med 2016 Jun;46(6):885-97

Alliance for Research in Exercise, Nutrition and Physical Activity, Sansom Institute for Health Research, University of South Australia, Adelaide, SA, Australia.

Background: Recently, several authors have proposed the use of a submaximal 'perceptually regulated exercise test' (PRET) to predict maximal oxygen uptake ([Formula: see text]). The PRET involves asking the individual to self-regulate a series of short bouts of exercise corresponding to pre-set ratings of perceived exertion (RPE). The individual linear relationship between RPE and oxygen uptake (RPE:[Formula: see text]) is then extrapolated to the [Formula: see text], which corresponds to the theoretical maximal RPE (RPE20). Studies suggest that prediction accuracy from this method may be better improved during a second PRET. Similarly, some authors have recommended an extrapolation to RPE19 rather than RPE20.

Objectives: The purpose of the meta-analysis was to examine the validity of the method of predicting [Formula: see text] from the RPE:[Formula: see text] during a PRET, and to determine the level of agreement and accuracy of predicting [Formula: see text] from an initial PRET and retest using RPE19 and RPE20.

Data Sources: From a systematic search of the literature, 512 research articles were identified.

Study Eligibility Criteria: The eligible manuscripts were those which used the relationship between the RPE≤15 and [Formula: see text], and used only the Borg's RPE scale.

Participants And Interventions: Ten studies (n = 274 individuals) were included.

Study Appraisal And Synthesis Methods: For each study, actual and predicted [Formula: see text] from four subgroup outcomes (RPE19 in the initial test, RPE19 in the retest, RPE20 in the initial test, RPE20 in the retest) were identified, and then compared. The magnitude of the difference regardless of subgroup outcomes was examined to determine if it is better to predict [Formula: see text] from extrapolation to RPE19 or RPE20. The magnitude of differences was examined for the best PRET (test vs retest).

Results: The results revealed that [Formula: see text] may be predicted from RPE:[Formula: see text] during PRET in different populations and in various PRET modalities, regardless of the subgroup outcomes. To obtain greater accuracy of predictions, extrapolation to RPE20 during a retest may be recommended.

Limitations: The included studies reported poor selection bias and data collection methods.

Conclusions And Implications Of Key Findings: The [Formula: see text] may be predicted from RPE:[Formula: see text] during PRET, especially when [Formula: see text] is extrapolated to RPE20 during a second PRET.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s40279-015-0465-xDOI Listing
June 2016

Validity of Submaximal Step Tests to Estimate Maximal Oxygen Uptake in Healthy Adults.

Sports Med 2016 May;46(5):737-50

Alliance for Research in Exercise, Nutrition and Activity, Sansom Institute for Health Research, University of South Australia, Adelaide, SA, Australia.

Background: Aerobic capacity (VO2max) is a strong predictor of health and fitness and is considered a key physiological measure in the healthy adult population. Submaximal step tests provide a safe, simple and ecologically valid means of assessing VO2max in both the general population and a rehabilitation setting. However, no studies have attempted to synthesize the existing knowledge regarding the validity of the multiple step-test protocols available to estimate VO2max in the healthy adult population.

Objectives: The objective of this study was to systematically review literature on the validity and reliability of submaximal step-test protocols to estimate VO2max in healthy adults (age 18-65 years).

Data Sources And Study Selection: A systematic literature search of the MEDLINE, EMBASE, Scopus, Web of Science, and Cochrane Library databases was performed. The search returned 690 studies that underwent the initial screening process. To be included, the study had to (1) have participants deemed to be healthy and aged between 18 and 65 years; (2) assess VO2max by means of a submaximal step test against a graded exercise test (GXT) to volitional exhaustion; and (3) be available in English. Reference lists from included articles were screened for additional articles.

Data Analysis And Study Appraisal Methods: The primary outcome measures used were the validity statistics between the actual measured VO2max and predicted VO2max values, and the reported direction of the statistically significant difference between the measured VO2max and the predicted VO2max. The Quality Assessment Tool for Quantitative Studies was used to assess the risk of bias in each included study, and was adapted to the type of quantitative study design used.

Results: The combined database search produced 690 studies, from which 644 were excluded during the screening process. Following full-text assessment, a further 39 studies were excluded based on the eligibility criteria detailed previously. Four additional studies were located via the reference lists of the included studies, leaving 11 studies that fulfilled the inclusion criteria and which compared eight different step-test protocols against a direct measure of VO2max incurred during a maximal GXT. Validity measures varied, with a broad range of correlation coefficients reported across the 11 studies (r = 0.469-0.95). Of the 11 studies, two reported reliability measures, demonstrating good test-retest reliability [mean -0.8 ± 3.7 mL kg(-1) min(-1) (±7.7 % of the mean measured VO2max)].

Conclusions: Considering the relationship between VO2max and various markers of health, the use of step tests as a measure of health in both the general adult population and rehabilitation settings is advocated. Step tests provide a simple, effective and ecologically valid method of submaximally assessing VO2max that can be implemented in a variety of situations within the general adult population. Future research is needed to assess the reliability of the majority of the step-test procedures reviewed. Based on the validity measures, submaximal step-test protocols are an acceptable means of estimating VO2max in the generally healthy adult population. For tracking changes in cardiorespiratory fitness, the Chester Step test appears to be an appropriate tool due to its high test-retest reliability.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s40279-015-0445-1DOI Listing
May 2016

A hard/heavy intensity is too much: The physiological, affective, and motivational effects (immediately and 6 months post-training) of unsupervised perceptually regulated training.

J Exerc Sci Fit 2015 Dec 24;13(2):123-130. Epub 2015 Nov 24.

Alliance for Research in Exercise, Nutrition, and Activity, Sansom Institute for Health Research, University of South Australia, Adelaide, Australia.

Background/objective: There are several practical and theoretical advantages to perceptually regulated training, including its simplicity of use and potential to influence exercise motivation. The study objective was to examine if perceptually regulated training at ratings of perceived exertion (RPE) of 13 and 15 resulted in significant increases in aerobic fitness, reductions in metabolic risk factors, and changes in motivational constructs following an 8-week training program and at follow up 6 months after.

Methods: Following stratified randomization based on estimated aerobic capacity and sex, sedentary volunteers ( = 63; men = 21) were allocated to one of three groups: RPE 13, RPE 15, and control. The participants completed baseline, post-training, and 6-months post-training assessments for aerobic fitness, metabolic risk factors, and motivational constructs. The participants' acute exercise training responses (affect, competence, enjoyment, and work rate) were also recorded.

Results: The data support the fitness and motivational construct hypotheses but not the metabolic risk factor hypothesis. Aerobic fitness increased from the baseline to post-training in both RPE groups, with the increase maintained 6 months post-training only in the RPE 13 group. Exercise autonomy increased over the training program, with exercise competence and affect more positive in the RPE 13 group than in the RPE 15. However, the training programs did not reduce the metabolic risk factors, and attrition levels were high. Unsupervised training at RPE 13 and RPE 15 did improve fitness, but as hypothesized, this was not maintained in the RPE 15 group 6 months post-training.

Conclusion: The motivational processes associated with RPE 13 regulated exercise (greater competence and autonomy and more positive affect) potentially explain the maintained fitness in this group.
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http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jesf.2015.10.002DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5812835PMC
December 2015
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