Int J Sports Med 1995; 16(5): 304-308
DOI: 10.1055/s-2007-973010
Training and Testing

© Georg Thieme Verlag Stuttgart · New York

Physiological Responses of Speed Skaters to Treadmill Low Walking and Cycle Ergometry

K. W. Rundell, L. P. Pripstein
  • Department of Sports Science and Technology, United States Olympic Committee, Lake Placid, New York
Further Information

Publication History

Publication Date:
09 March 2007 (online)

Speed skaters have previously relied on cycle ergometry for physiological testing. Current evidence suggests skate-specific testing might be more appropriate. Unlike cycling, skating and off-ice low walk training involves a 'crouched' posture, placing the quadriceps in static contraction. This may compromise blood flow to working muscles and influence VO2. We compared physiological variables between skate-specific treadmill low walking (LW) and cycle ergometry (BK). Skaters (N = 8) performed LW and BK to fatigue in randomized order. No difference existed for peak HR. Peak VO2 was lower for LW (4.13 ± 0.34 vs 4.43 ± 0.35, p < 0.05). Peak VE was lower during LW (146 ± 13 vs 180 ± 31, p < 0.05). R was significantly lower for LW, although no difference in peak lactate (LA) was evident. At submaximal heart rates, VO2 was lower during LW (p < 0.05), and submaximal LA was higher when expressed as percent peak VO2 (p < 0.05). These results are consistent with the hypothesis that skating posture limits O2 delivery to the lower extremities, and thus accounts for a greater dependence upon anaerobic energy production.