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Differentiated Ratings of Perceived Exertion: How do People Perceive Exertion during Cycling and Handcycling?

Oldenburg, M and Hettinga, FJ (2014) Differentiated Ratings of Perceived Exertion: How do People Perceive Exertion during Cycling and Handcycling? In: 19th annual congress of the European College of Sport Science, ? - ?, Amsterdam.

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Ratings of perceived exertion (RPE) provide a subjective estimation of exercise intensity, commonly used in lower body exercises such as cycling and running. However, the question as to whether these results can be applied in upper body exercise, as is relevant for wheelchair users or sports performance with a focus on upper body exercise, is debatable. Objective: The purpose of this study was to better understand (perception of) fatigue in upper body exercise. More specifically, the current study focused on whether differentiated RPE?s (local, central and overall) were affected by exercise mode (upper versus lower body exercise) and by upper body training. Methods: Eight well trained male rowers (23.4�2.1yr; 87.9�9.2kg; 1.89�0.05m; 5.5�2.5h exercise per week) completed an incremental cycling test (CY) and an incremental handcycling test before (HCpre) and after three weeks of handcycle training (HCpost). Non-Parametric Friedman tests were used to compare differences between CY/HCpost and HCpre/HCpost in central (RPE-C, reported on a 6-20 scale), local (RPE-L, reported on a 1-10 scale) and overall (RPE-O, reported on a 1-10 scale) perceived exertion (P<0.05). Results: Participants reported higher peak RPE-C during CY compared to HCpost (resp. 17.4�2.4; 15.9�1.9). In contrast, higher values of peak RPE-O were reported during HCpost (CY: 8.3�1.1; HCpost: 9.1�0.6) (P<.05). After HC training, significant changes were noted in peak RPE-O (HCpre: 7.9�0.9; HCpost: 9.1�0.6) and peak RPE-C (resp. 14.6�2.6; 15.9�1.9). No differences were found for peak RPE-L between CY/HCpost and HCpre/HCpost. However, throughout the incremental HC tests, RPE-L was reported consistently higher in each sub/maximal stage than RPE-O at the same power output. Conclusion: At exhaustion, RPE-C seems to play a larger role in CY compared to HC. RPE-O on the other hand plays a larger role at exhaustion in HC. Furthermore, RPE-L is perceived higher than RPE-O during all sub-maximal stages of the incremental HCtest. Overall, these results suggest that exertion is perceived differently in upper body exercise compared to lower body exercise, with a somewhat larger periferally oriented focus in handcycling compared to a more centrally oriented focus in cycling. The use of RPE-C as a measure of perceived exertion in upper body exercise, as is commonly obtained in lower body exercise, therefore needs to be interpreted with caution. The inclusion of an additional focus on local perceived exertion might be advisable when ratings of perceived exertion in upper body exercise are obtained in rehabilitation and/or sports settings.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Additional Information: Published proceedings: _not provided_ - Notes:
Uncontrolled Keywords: arm exercise; wheelchair users; fatigue
Subjects: Q Science > QH Natural history > QH301 Biology
Divisions: Faculty of Science and Health
Faculty of Science and Health > Sport, Rehabilitation and Exercise Sciences, School of
SWORD Depositor: Elements
Depositing User: Elements
Date Deposited: 22 Sep 2014 08:58
Last Modified: 15 Jan 2022 01:19

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