Effects of ageing and training on maximal heart rate and VO2max.

C. L. Betros, K. H. McKeever, C. F. Kearns, K. Malinowski

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

51 Scopus citations

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to test the hypotheses that ageing would result in a decline in maximal heart rate (HRmax) and maximal aerobic capacity (VO2max) and, secondarily, that those effects would be reversible with training. Eighteen, healthy, unfit Standardbred mares representing 3 age groups: young (Y = mean +/- s.e. 6.8 +/- 0.4 years, n = 6); middle-aged (MA = 15.2 +/- 0.4 years, n = 6); and old (O = 27.0 +/- 0.2 years, n = 6) were used. HRmax, VO2max and oxygen pulse at VO2max (OPmax) and the velocities producing HRmax (VHRmax) and VO2max (VVO2max) were measured during pretraining and post-training incremental exercise tests (GXT). During training, mares exercised 3 days/week (Weeks 1-8) and 4 days/week (Weeks 9-12) at a submaximal intensity (approximately 60% HRmax) for approximately 30 min/day. There were no differences (P>0.05) between Y and MA, before (218 +/- 2 vs. 213 +/- 3 beats/min; 116 +/- 3 vs. 109 +/- 3 ml/kg bwt/min; 0.55 +/- 0.01 vs. 0.52 +/- 0.02 ml/kg/beat; 9.0 +/- 0.3 vs. 9.3 +/- 0.2 ms; 8.8 +/- 0.2 vs. 8.8 +/- 0.2 m/s) or after training (224 +/- 2 vs. 218 +/- 2 beats/min; 131 +/- 3 vs. 120 +/- 2 ml/kg bwt/min; 0.58 +/- 0.01 vs. 0.55 +/- 0.01 ml/kg/beat; 10.5 +/- 0.2 vs. 9.5 +/- 0.1 ms; 10.6 +/- 0.2 vs. 9.5 +/- 0.1 m/s) for HRmax, VO2max, OPmax, VHRmax or VVO2max, respectively. Old horses had lower HRmax, VO2max and OPmax and reached them at lower velocities compared to Y and MA (P<0.05), both before (193 +/- 3 beats/min; 83.2 +/- 2.0 ml/kg bwt/min; 0.43 +/- 0.01 ml/kg/beat; 7.8 +/- 0.1 m/s; 7.2 +/- 0.1 m/s) and after training (198 +/- 2 beats/min; 95 +/- 2 ml/kg bwt/min; 0.48 +/- 0.01 ml/kg/beat; 8.2 +/- 0.2 m/s; 8.0 +/-0.2 m/s). Training did not alter HRmax in any age group (P>0.05) but did cause increases in VO2max, OPmax and VVO2max for all groups (P<0.05). Interestingly, training increased VHRmax only in Y (P<0.05). These data demonstrate that there is a reduction in HRmax, VO2max, OPmax, VHRmax and VVO2max in old horses, and that training can partially reverse some effects of ageing.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)100-105
Number of pages6
JournalEquine veterinary journal. Supplement
Issue number34
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 2002

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Medicine(all)

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