The objective of this study was to investigate the characteristics of the submaximal Oxygen Uptake Efficiency Slope (OUES) in a healthy pediatric population. Bicycle ergometry exercise tests with gas-analyses were performed in 46 healthy children aged 7–17 years. Maximal OUES, submaximal OUES, V̇O2peak, VEpeak, and ventilatory threshold (VT) were determined. The submaximal OUES correlated highly with V̇O2peak, VEpeak, and VT. Strong correlations were found with basic anthropometric variables. The submaximal OUES could provide an objective, independent measure of cardiorespiratory function in children, reflecting efficiency of ventilation. We recommend expressing OUES values relative to Body Surface Area (BSA) or Fat Free Mass (FFM).
Akkerman, van Brussel, Bongers, Hulzebos, Helders, and Takken are with the Child Development and Exercise Center, Division of Pediatrics, University Children’s Hospital and Medical Center, Utrecht, the Netherlands.