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Article Title

THE IMPACT OF TEMPERATURE ON THE RATE OF PERCEIVED EXERTION WHILE ROWING ON AN ERGOMETER

Abstract

Micah Hartwell1, Hailey Belveal1, Christa Montgomery2, Myriah Scullawl1 1Oklahoma State University, Tulsa, Oklahoma. 2University of Tulsa, Tulsa, Oklahoma

Rate of Perceived Exertion (RPE) is one of the more researched psychological aspects of exercise, particularly in endurance running and cycling. The use of RPE has been validated in the sport of rowing during short intervals at different intensities; however, no research is known to have examined this phenomenon during long-duration rowing, nor investigated the impact of temperature on it within the sport. Previous research has shown that cardiovascular drift follows a pattern that is different in rowing than in running or cycling, which may have an impact on RPE, especially in different temperatures. PURPOSE: The current research aims to determine if there is a difference in RPE when rowing at the ACSM recommended temperature range (68°-72°) and in a slightly colder environment over time. METHODS: Two groups of 10 collegiate rowers, from a midwestern university, performed a 60’ minute submaximal exercise bout on a Concept2 rowing machine and were randomized to different ambient temperature settings (67° and 61°). Submaximal target speed was determined from a previous maximal exertion session. Each participant’s RPE was recorded at3 minutes intervals using the Borg’s Scale. The initial analysis determined if peak RPE differed between groups and was followed with a one-factor, two-level, repeated-measures ANOVA to determine if RPE differed between groups over time. RESULTS: Participants in the colder setting reported higher peak RPE (M = 5.4, SD= 1.65) versus participants in the warmer temperature (M=3.7, SD = .823) (t = -2.92, df = 18, p = .009). There was also a statistically significant difference in RPE through the interaction of time and temperature (F= 5.014, df = 1, 18, p = .012) meaning that as time progressed, participants in the colder group found it increasingly harder to maintain their submaximal target speed than the other group. CONCLUSION: Previous research has shown that exercising in lower temperatures reduces RPE in repetitive motion sports such as running and cycling; however, the current analysis does not uphold this trend in rowing. Our findings show that rowing on an ergometer in a colder setting maybe more psychologically pressing than in a warmer environment.

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