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The aim of the study was to examine submaximal and maximal physiological responses and perceived exertion during deep-water running with a vest compared with the responses during treadmill running in healthy elderly women. Eleven healthy women 70 ± 2 years old participated. On two different occasions they performed a graded maximal exercise test on a treadmill on land and a graded maximal exercise test in water wearing a vest. At maximal work the oxygen uptake was 29% lower (p < .05), the heart rate was 8% lower (p < .05), and the ventilation was 16% lower (p < .05) during deep-water running than during treadmill running. During submaximal absolute work the heart rate was higher during deep-water running than during treadmill running for the elderly women. The participants had lower maximal oxygen uptake, heart rate, ventilation, respiratory-exchange ratio, and rate of perceived exertion during maximal deep-water running with a vest than during maximal treadmill running. These responses were, however, higher during submaximal deep-water running than during treadmill running.

Broman and Engardt are with the Dept. of Sports and Health Sciences, Stockholm University College of Physical Education and Sports, 114 86 Stockholm, Sweden. Broman, Quintana, Jansson, and Kaijser are with the Dept. of Laboratory Medicine, Division of Clinical Physiology, Karolinska Institute, Karolinska University Hospital at Huddinge, Huddinge, Sweden. Gullstrand is with the Swedish National Sports Complex at Boson, 181 47 Lidingö, Sweden.