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  • Author: Lee N. Cunningham x
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Lee N. Cunningham

This study compared team performances of adolescent female cross-country runners in relation to maximal oxygen consumption (V̇O2 max), ventilatory threshold, and running economy (RE). Twenty female runners (M age = 16.0 yrs) from four high school teams that competed in the Massachusetts All-State Cross-Country Championship Meet underwent maximal treadmill testing. When physiologic parameters were grouped by team, significant differences were observed for only V̇O2 max and percent V̇O2 at a 215 m • min−1 pace. The mean VO2 max for Team 1 (the All-State Meet champions) was found to be significantly higher than that of Teams 3 and 4 (70.7 ± 4 vs. 56.5±4, and 58.6 ± 4 ml • kg−1 • min−1, respectively). When running on the treadmill at a 215 m • min−1 pace, members of Team 1 were working at a significandy lower percent of VO2 max than Team 3 (70 ± 3 vs. 84 ± 4). The estimated physiologic requirements for running the All-State Meet based upon data derived from physiologic testing were not statistically different between teams (p>0.05). In conclusion, most of the physiologic variables investigated were not sensitive enough to separate out performance differences between top high school cross-country teams. Of these variables, VO2 max is suggested to be the primary physiologic determinant for team success for this age group of female runners.

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Lee N. Cunningham

To compare the physiologic differences between adolescent male and female cross-country runners, 12 male and 12 female high school nonelite distance runners who had competed successfully at the All State 5-km championship cross-country meet were tested in the laboratory. Data were analyzed in relation to maximal oxygen consumption (VO2max), ventilatory threshold (VT), and running economy (RE). Male runners were taller, heavier, had less body fat, and ran faster by 2 minutes and 18 seconds than female runners. Running economy was similar between gender. VO2 at a 215 m•min−1 pace was 46.7 ml•kg−1•min−1 for male runners and 47.8 ml•kg−1•min−1 for female runners. At the VT, males demonstrated a higher VO2 and treadmill velocity than females. Heart rate, percent HR max, and percent VO2 max at the VT were not different between gender. Males demonstrated a higher VO2 max of 74.6 versus 66.1 ml•kg−1•min−1 than female runners. The fractional utilization of VO2 at race pace was not different between males (90%) and females (91%). In conclusion, the primary physiologic determinant for performance differences between nonelite, competitive male and female adolescent distance runners is associated with VO2 max.

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Carmelo Bazzano, Lee N. Cunningham, Giovanni Cama, and Tony Falconio

The purpose of this study was to examine the relationship between selected physiological variables and lactate accumulation at the end of a l-mile walk test (MWT) in older women (mean ± SD: 64.6 ± 3.1 years). Seventeen women with a V˙O2peak (ml · kg-1 · min-1) of 21.1 ± 4.2 volunteered to participate. Physiological data were obtained via a COSMED K2 miniaturized O2 analyzer with telemetric capabilities during a maximal treadmill (TM) test and MWT. Blood samples were obtained from the ear lobe for lactale analysis immediately before and after the treadmill test and MWT. Subjects performed the MWT in 15.4 ± 1.4 min at an intensity of 76% of V˙O2 peak and 86% of HRmax. The blood lactate accumulated at the end of the MWT was 2.61 ± 1.47 mmol/L. Peak lactate following the maximal treadmill test was 3.8 ± 1.42 mmol/L. HR during the test was significantly related with blood lactate (r= .65, p< .01). The lactate values observed during the lest suggest that the I-mile walk test is a suitable field testing procedure for older women.

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Carmelo Bazzano, Lee N. Cunningham, Giovanni Cama, and Tony Falconio

This study examined the physiology of the 1-mile walk test as administered in the field with 16 (7 M, 9 F) older adults (mean age 66.1 ± 5.9 yrs). Physiologic data were obtained via a Cosmed K2 miniaturized O2 analyzer with telemetric capabilities during a maximal treadmill (TM) test and a 1-mile walk test (MWT). Oxygen consumption (ml · kg−1 · min−1), minute ventilation (L · min−1), and heart rate (b · min−1) values obtained at maximal levels on the TM were 25.6 ± 7.6, 57 ± 17, and 155 ± 16, respectively. The measured V̇O2 submax during the MWT was 18.5 + 5, V̇E submax was 44 ± 10, and HR submax was 140 ± 19. The subjects were able to hold 74% of the V̇O2max, 81% of V̇Emax, and 91% of HR max. An upward drift for HR and V̇E was noted while V̇O2 remained constant throughout the MWT. The MWT with older subjects requires a vigorous level of metabolic and cardiorespiratory intensity. For healthy older adults who have been properly screened for hidden metabolic and cardiovascular diseases, participation in the MWT appears feasible.

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Carmelo Bazzano, Lee N. Cunningham, Giustino Varrassi, and Tony Falconio

The present study examined the relationships among the AAHPERD Physical Best health related physical fitness test (HRPFT) items to resting blood pressure in 80 boys and 84 girls from the Lanciano, Italy, school system. Systolic blood pressure (SBP) was significantly associated with age for both sexes. Diastolic blood pressure (DBP) for boys was found to be associated with fatness when age was held constant. To examine the relationship between blood pressure and the HRPFT, data were sorted into two groups of students passing or failing to meet the criterion-referenced standard (CRS) by 1-mile run performance and sum of skinfolds. SBP did not differ significantly between groups for either sex. Boys who failed to meet the CRS for 1-mile run performance showed a higher DBP of 4 mmHg when compared to boys who achieved the CRS. The group passing the aerobic fitness and body composition tests tended to perform better on all test items. With the possible exception of DBP for boys, it is concluded that performance on the Physical Best HRPFT is not associated with resting blood pressure in children and adolescents.