Aerobic Training with the Elevation Training Mask
Drs. Maureen Dunn and Mark Northuis, Department of Kinesiology
Altitude training simulators have been produced with the goal of providing the benefits of altitude training to a variety of populations. One altitude-simulating device is the Elevation Training Mask 2.0 which uses a series of inhalation and exhalation valves to decrease the volume of airflow in and out of the mask with a single breath. This study was designed to see if High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) sessions (10x 60 seconds) twice a week, along with a single day of steady state exercise (30 minutes) per week on a cycle ergometer with the Elevation Training Mask 2.0 (MASK, n=5) would significantly decrease oxygen deficit, decrease time to VO2 steady-state, and improve oxygen economy at the onset of submaximal exercise compared to training without the Elevation Training Mask 2.0 (CON, n=4). It was hypothesized that greater stress on the respiratory system, from wearing the Elevation Training Mask 2.0, would result in greater oxygen efficiency and utilization as marked by oxygen deficit, time to VO2 steady-state, and VO2 needed to exercise at a set intensity. Following 4 weeks of training significant improvements were seen in oxygen deficit between MASK and CON (MASK: 410.68±66.08, CON: 459.01±73.87 ml/kg/min, p=.022). Significant differences were seen in time to VO2 steady-state with training for all participants (pre:77.33±20.38, post:56.89±11.92 seconds, p=0.015); however, there were no differences between groups post-training (MASK: 67.40±6.66, CON: 66.75±7.45 seconds, p= 0.95). No differences were found in VO2 demand with training (pre:34.98±3.87, post:34.04±3.21 ml/kl/min, p= 0.436), or between groups. Evidence suggests a decreased oxygen deficit at the onset of submaximal exercise following aerobic training with the Elevation Training Mask 2.0.
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