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Chronic and Acute Inspiratory Muscle Loading Augment the Effect of a 6-Week Interval Program on Tolerance of High-Intensity Intermittent Bouts of Running

Tong, Tom K1,2; Fu, Frank H1; Eston, Roger3; Chung, Pak-Kwong1,2; Quach, Binh2; Lu, Kui1

Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research: November 2010 - Volume 24 - Issue 11 - pp 3041-3048
doi: 10.1519/JSC.0b013e3181bf033b
Original Research

Tong, TK, Fu, FH, Eston, R, Chung, P-K, Quach, B, and Lu, K. Chronic and acute inspiratory muscle loading augment the effect of a 6-week interval program on tolerance of high-intensity intermittent bouts of running. J Strength Cond Res 24(11): 3041-3048, 2010-This study examined the hypothesis that chronic (training) and acute (warm-up) loaded ventilatory activities applied to the inspiratory muscles (IM) in an integrated manner would augment the training volume of an interval running program. This in turn would result in additional improvement in the maximum performance of the Yo-Yo intermittent recovery test in comparison with interval training alone. Eighteen male nonprofessional athletes were allocated to either an inspiratory muscle loading (IML) group or control group. Both groups participated in a 6-week interval running program consisting of 3-4 workouts (1-3 sets of various repetitions of selected distance [100-2,400 m] per workout) per week. For the IML group, 4-week IM training (30 inspiratory efforts at 50% maximal static inspiratory pressure [P0] per set, 2 sets·d−1, 6 d·wk−1) was applied before the interval program. Specific IM warm-up (2 sets of 30 inspiratory efforts at 40% P0) was performed before each workout of the program. For the control group, neither IML was applied. In comparison with the control group, the interval training volume as indicated by the repeatability of running bouts at high intensity was approximately 27% greater in the IML group. Greater increase in the maximum performance of the Yo-Yo test (control: 16.9 ± 5.5%; IML: 30.7 ± 4.7% baseline value) was also observed after training. The enhanced exercise performance was partly attributable to the greater reductions in the sensation of breathlessness and whole-body metabolic stress during the Yo-Yo test. These findings show that the combination of chronic and acute IML into a high-intensity interval running program is a beneficial training strategy for enhancing the tolerance to high-intensity intermittent bouts of running.

1Dr. Stephen Hui Research Center for Physical Recreation and Wellness, Faculty of Social Sciences, Hong Kong Baptist University, Hong Kong, China; 2Department of Physical Education, Hong Kong Baptist University, Hong Kong, China; and 3School of Sport and Health Sciences, University of Exeter, Exeter, United Kingdom

Address correspondence to Tom K. Tong,

© 2010 National Strength and Conditioning Association