Cardiorespiratory fitness is assessed through graded exercise tests that determine the maximum amount of sustained mechanical work that an individual can perform while also providing health- and fitness-related information. This article describes a novel method to perform graded exercise tests that use posteriorly directed resistive forces. The purpose of this investigation was to validate a novel resistance-based test (RBT) in comparison with a traditional speed- and incline-based test (SIBT) in a cohort of nonimpaired individuals. Twenty nonimpaired individuals, 8 men and 20 women age 28.4 6 9.6, range 20-54 years old performed 2 maximal exercise tests. The SIBT used the Bruce Protocol and increased treadmill incline and speed every 3 minutes. The RBT used a robotic device interfaced with the treadmill that provided specified horizontal resistive forces at the center of mass calculated to match each Bruce Protocol stage while individuals walked at 1.1 m$s21. Subjects obtained ;3% higher maximum V O2 measure using the speed- and incline-based method (dependent t-test p = 0.08). VO2peaks between tests were strongly correlated (r = 0.93, p , 0.001). Peak values of secondary physiologic measures (i.e., max heart rate and respiratory exchange ratio) were within 3% between tests. We found a significant linear relationship between mass-specific work rate and measured VO2 stage by stage for both tests, but no significant difference between each linear fit (p = 0.84). These data suggest that horizontal resistive forces, while walking on a treadmill, can be used to increase aerobic effort in a way that closely simulates work rates of the Bruce Protocol.
- Aerobic testing
- Resistive force
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
- Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation