Publication Date

Spring 2022

Advisor(s) - Committee Chair

Dano Tolusso (Director), Whitley Stone, Scott Arnett, MArk Schafer

Degree Program

Department of Kinesiology, Recreation and Sport

Degree Type

Master of Science


Adaptations to resistance training and subsequent performance can be undermined by inadequate inter-set recovery. This time between sets is often uniformly prescribed based on desired training outcomes; however, there is demonstrative evidence that recovery is highly individualized. Methods typically used to monitor recovery were developed for longitudinal use, making them cost- or time -inefficient within a bout of exercise. If valid, the perceptual recovery status (PRS) scale may be used as an efficient and inexpensive recovery assessment tool to monitor individual recovery as well as appropriately modify rest periods. Purpose: The aim of the current study was to assess the criterion validity of PRS on monitoring recovery during a high-intensity back squat session. Methods: Seven apparently healthy men (age: 21.7 ± 1.4 yrs., height: 1.8 ± 0.1 m., weight: 84.2 ± 11.2 kg., body fat 12.7 ± 2.8 %) volunteered to participate in the two-session study. Study sessions were separated by a minimum of 48 hours. Session one served to gather anthropometrics, familiarize participants with PRS, and conduct a one-repetition maximum (1RM) back squat. Session two was the high-intensity protocol that consisted of five sets of five repetitions interspersed with a five-minute recovery interval at 85% of the preestablished 1RM. PRS was obtained before the first set and during the last 30 seconds of each subsequent recovery period; post-set rating of perceived exertion (RPE) was also collected. A linear position transducer was fixed on the end of the barbell to collect average power of repetitions and fatigue index (FI) calculations for each set. Repeated measures correlations were used to assess the common intra-individual relationships between PRS scores immediately before each set to average power, post-set RPE, and associated FI, respectively. Results: A strong, positive correlation was found between PRS and average power (r[95% CI] = .837 [.671 - 924]; p < .0001); whereas a weak-to-moderate, inverse correlation was found for PRS and FI (r[95% CI]= -.342 [-.639, .044]; p = .07). A moderate-to-strong, negative correlation was found between PRS and RPE (r[95% CI]= -.663 [ -.833, -.378]; p < .0001). Conclusions: Results indicate that PRS can be a non-invasive and immediate means for practitioners to monitor individualized inter-set recovery; however, it may not be a viable option to predict intra-set decrements of performance (FI). PRS tracked very well with a previously established marker of perceptual exertion (RPE), which further strengthens its utility in a practitioner-based setting. Practical Applications: This study provides insight into the practicality of PRS to assess recovery during a high-intensity back squat session. It could be used alongside other measures of performance and recovery monitoring in order to program individualized recovery between sets of lower extremity resistance training in an attempt to maintain performance and desired physiological adaptations.


Exercise Science