Received: 01-12-2016 -- Accepted: 31-01-2017 --
Published (online): 01-03-2017
The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of non-contingent feedback in the form of heart rate (HR) on the incidence of plateau at V̇O2max. Ten physically active males (age 24.8 yrs ± 4.2; mass 81.4 ± 9.0 kg; stature 1.80 ± 0.11 m, V̇O2max 53.2 ± 5.8 ml·kg-1.min-1) who were V̇O2max testing naïve but were cognisant as to the heart rate responses to exercise completed four incremental tests to volitional exhaustion, separated by ~72 h for the determination of V̇O2max and gas exchange threshold. The first trial served as a familiarisation with the remaining three being experimental conditions where HR was presented in a screen projection as either the actual response (HR-A) or 10 b·min-1 higher than recorded (HR-H) or 10 b·min-1 lower (HR-L). Throughout all trials V̇O2 was recorded on a breath-by-breath basis with plateau criteria of ≤ 50 ml·min-1. RESULTS: A significant difference was observed for Δ V̇O2 over the final two consecutive 30s sampling periods between HR-A, both HR-L and HR-H (p = 0.049) and for the incidence of plateau response between condition (p = 0.021). An additional significant difference was observed for sub-maximal Δ V̇O2 responses between HR-A and HR-H (p = 0.049) and HR-A and HR-L (p = 0.006). Non-significant differences were observed for all other criteria. These data indicate that when presented with non-contingent feedback in the form of HR, that the perceptually orientated pacing schema becomes disrupted promoting a sparing of the finite anaerobic capacity to compensate for the imbalance between the afferent signal and perception of effort.
The manifestation of the plateau at V̇O2max is disrupted (lower incidence rates) when participants are exposed to non-contingent feedback in the form of heart rate.
Non-contingent feedback in the form of heart rate does not affect the V̇O2max score or associated cardio-respiratory parameters.
Given the association between the V̇O2-plateau and the finite anaerobic capacity it is proposed that non-contingent feedback creates a sparing of this resource due to an imbalance between the perception of effort and the bio-feedback.
Viviane Merzbach, Adrian Scruton, James Baker, Marie Gernigon, Dan Gordon,
The Effects of Non-Contingent Feedback on the Incidence of Plateau at V̇O2max.
Journal of Sports Science and Medicine(16), 105 - 111.
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