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The Effects of Training Volume and Repetition Distance on Session Rating of Perceived Exertion and Internal Load in Swimmers

Renato Barroso, Diego F. Salgueiro, Everton C. do Carmo, and Fábio Y. Nakamura


To assess swimmers’ session rating of perceived exertion (sRPE) after standardized sets of interval swimming training performed at the same relative intensity but with different total volume and repetition distance.


Thirteen moderately trained swimmers (21.1 ± 1.1 y, 178 ± 6 cm, 74.1 ± 8.3 kg, 100-m freestyle 60.2 ± 2.9 s) performed 4 standardized sets (10 × 100-m, 20 × 100-m, 10 × 200-m, and 5 × 400-m) at the same relative intensity (ie, critical speed), and 1 coach (age 31 y, 7 y coaching experience) rated their efforts. Swimmers’ sRPE was assessed 30 min after the training session. Coach sRPE was collected before each training session. Internal load was calculated by multiplying sRPE by session duration.


When bouts with the same repetition distance and different volumes (10 × 100-m vs 20 × 100-m) are compared, sRPE and internal load are higher in 20 × 100-m bouts. When maintaining constant volume, sRPE and internal load (20 × 100-m, 10 × 200-m, and 5 × 400-m) are higher only in 5 × 400-m bouts. The coach’s and swimmers’ sRPE differed in 10 × 200-m and 5 × 400-m.


These results indicate that sRPE in swimming is affected not only by intensity but also by volume and repetition distance. In addition, swimmers’ and the coach’s sRPE were different when longer repetition distances were used during training sessions. Therefore, care should be taken when prescribing swimming sessions with longer volume and/or longer repetition distances.

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Influence of an Enforced Fast Start on 10-km-Running Performance

Everton C. do Carmo, Renato Barroso, Andrew Renfree, Saulo Gil, and Valmor Tricoli

The effects of an enforced fast start on long-distance performance are controversial and seem to depend on the athlete’s capacity to delay and tolerate metabolic disruption. The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of an enforced start on 10-km-running performance and the influence of the some physiological and performance variables on the ability to tolerate an enforced fast start during the running. Fifteen moderately trained runners performed two 10-km time trials (TTs): free pacing (FP-TT) and fast start (FS-TT). During FS-TT, speed during the first kilometer was 6% higher than in FP-TT. Maximal oxygen uptake (VO2max), peak velocity (PV), velocity associated with VO2max (vVO2max), ventilatory threshold, and running economy at 10 and 12 km/h and FP-TT average velocity (AV-10 km) were individually determined. There were no differences between FP-TT and FS-TT performance (45:01 ± 4:08 vs 45:11 ± 4:46 min:s, respectively, P = .4). Eight participants improved (+2.2%) their performance and were classified as positive responders (PR) and 7 decreased (–3.3%) performance and were classified as negative responders (NR). Running speed was significantly higher for PR between 6 and 9.2 km (P < .05) during FS-TT. In addition, PR presented higher PV (P = .02) and vVO2max (P = .01) than NR, suggesting that PV and vVO2max might influence the ability to tolerate a fast-start strategy. In conclusion, there was an individual response to the enforced fast-start strategy during 10-km running, and those who improved performance also presented higher vVO2max and PV, suggesting a possible association between these variables and response to the strategy adopted.

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Affective Feelings and Perceived Exertion During a 10-km Time Trial and Head-to-Head Running Race

Everton C. do Carmo, Renato Barroso, Andrew Renfree, Natalia R. da Silva, Saulo Gil, and Valmor Tricoli

Purpose: To verify the affective feelings (AFs) and rating of perceived exertion (RPE) responses during a 10-km competitive head-to-head (HTH) running race and compare them with a time-trial (TT) running race. Methods: Fourteen male runners completed 2 × 10-km runs (TT and HTH) on different days. Speed, RPE, and AF were measured every 400 m. For pacing analysis, races were divided into the following 4 stages: first 400 m (F400), 401–5000 m (M1), 5001–9600 m (M2), and the last 400 m (final sprint). Results: Improvement of performance was observed (39:32 [02:41] min:s vs 40:28 [02:55] min:s; P = .03; effect size = −0.32) in HTH compared with TT. There were no differences in either pacing strategy or RPE between conditions. AFs were higher during the HTH, being different in M2 compared with TT (2.09 [1.81] vs 0.22 [2.25]; P = .02; effect size = 0.84). Conclusions: AFs are directly influenced by the presence of opponents during an HTH race, and a more positive AF could be involved in the dissociation between RPE and running speed and, consequently, the overall race performance.