Z. Solis & R. Tollefsrud
Gustavus Adolphus College, St. Peter, MN

An endurance athlete’s ability to increase maximal oxygen uptake (VO2max) through aerobic training is the key to success. A high VO2max means the lungs will absorb more oxygen and the muscles will use that oxygen more efficiently. It is known that aerobic exercise improves VO2max, but it is unknown if certain types of aerobic exercise improve VO2max more than other types. Reis, Alves, Bruno, Vleck, Millet (2012) reported that a greater VO2max allowed for higher aerobic power during the primary phase (17.3 ± 5.4sec) of an incremental swimming test for male swimmers. The purpose of this study is to determine if long-distance swimming workouts result in a higher or lower VO2max than cross-country running, or if there is no significant difference. This study will include 32 volunteers from the Gustavus men and women’s swim and cross-country team. 15 distance swimmers, eight male and seven female and 15 cross-country runners, eight men and seven women will be selected to participate in the study just before the end of the respective seasons in order to measure their VO2max at its peak. A comparison study will be used to analyze the results. Maximal oxygen uptake tests will be performed on a treadmill in the Human Performance Lab at Gustavus Adolphus College. The independent variables will be the separate groups in the study: long-distance swimmers and cross-country runners. The dependent variable will be VO2max. An independent sample t-test will be used to compare the effect of swimming versus running on VO2max. It is anticipated that there will not be a significant difference in VO2max levels at the p < 0.05 confidence interval between long-distance swimmers and runners. The predicted mean VO2max of swimmers will be (68 ± 3.7ml/kg/min) compared to the runners (66.87 ± 3.54ml/kg/min). This study revealed that long-distance swimming is no different than cross-country running on VO2max levels. The data collection is in progress.

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