Other Subject Area

Exercise responses and posture/balance


Although several studies investigated heart rate (HR) and metabolic responses to preferred walking speed (PWS), there is a limited amount of data on PWS responses during varying inclines. Further, there is no data pertaining to the impact of PWS at various inclines on postural control. The purpose of the study was to measure cardiovascular, metabolic, perceptual, and postural impacts of walking at PWS at various inclines. Twenty-one participants completed two lab sessions, seven days apart. On day one, PWS on the treadmill and maximal oxygen consumption (O2max) were established for each participant. On day two, using a counter balanced design, participants completed three, 15-minute walking sessions at their PWS at 0, 4, and 8% inclines. During the sessions, HR, O2, rating of perceived exertion (RPE), O2 reserve (O2R) and HR reserve (HRR) were measured and recorded. Center of Pressure (COP) motion was recorded while standing upon a force plate immediately following each walking bout with eyes closed (EC) and eyes open (EO). The results of the study demonstrated a significant difference (p