An Explorative Study into the Relationship between Increasing Exercise Intensity and Visual Function in Prepubertal Male Soccer Players

in Pediatric Exercise Science
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Nine first team (age, 11.7 ± 0.32 years) and nine reserve team (age, 11.8 ± 0.32 years) soccer players completed a discontinuous incremental exercise test to exhaustion on a treadmill. Each submaximal stage lasted 3 min. Irnrnediately after each stage, contrast sensitivity and peripheral vision were assessed. No significant differences were found between the groups for VO2peak. Reserve team players had significantly lower (p < .05) submaximal values of %VO2peak and ΔHR (pre-exercise heart rate) at the same running speed comparedto first team players. Significant relationships (p < .05) were noted between outer peripheral vision and respiratory exchange ratio following maximal exercise (r = 0.55) and between respiratory rate and outer peripheral vision following the first (8.0 krn · h−1) exercise stage, r = −0.49. However, it was difficult to reconcile physiological significance to these relationships, which would only account for 24 to 29% of the shown variance.

A.R. Middlebrooke is with the Children’s Health and Exercise Research Centre at the School of Postgraduate Medicine and Health Science, University of Exeter, Exeter, EX1 2LU, UK. G. Stephenson is with the Department of Orthoptics at the University of Liverpool. V.B. Unnithan is with the Department of Exercise and Sport Science at the University of San Francisco, San Francisco, CA 94117-1080.

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