Prediction of peak oxygen uptake from ratings of perceived exertion during arm exercise in able-bodied and persons with poliomyelitis

H Q Al-Rahamneh, J A Faulkner, C Byrne, R G Eston
Spinal Cord 2011, 49 (1): 131-5

STUDY DESIGN: Each participant completed an arm-crank ramp exercise test to volitional exhaustion.

OBJECTIVE: To assess the utility of the rating of perceived exertion (RPE) to predict peak oxygen uptake (VO(2)peak) during arm ergometry in able-bodied participants and those with poliomyelitis.

SETTING: University of Jordan, Amman, Jordan.

PARTICIPANTS: In all, 16 able-bodied and 15 participants with poliomyelitis completed an arm-crank ramp exercise test to volitional exhaustion.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: The prediction of VO(2)peak is calculated by extrapolating the sub-maximal RPE and VO(2) values by linear regression to RPE 20.

RESULTS: For the able-bodied participants, there were no significant differences between measured and predicted VO(2)peak from the three sub-maximal ranges of the RPE (RPEs before and including RPE 13, 15 and 17, P > 0.05). For the participants with poliomyelitis, the VO(2)peak predicted from RPEs before and including RPE 13 was significantly higher than measured VO(2)max (P < 0.05). The 95% limits of agreement of able-bodied participants for RPE 13, 15 and 17 (-3 ± 14, -1 ± 10 & 0 ± 8 ml kg(-1) min(-1), respectively) were lower than those observed for poliomyelitis participants (6 ± 19, 2 ± 12 and 1 ± 9 ml kg(-1) min(-1), respectively).

CONCLUSION: This study has shown that the estimation of VO(2)peak from submaximal RPE during arm ergometry is generally more accurate in able-bodied participants in comparison with those with poliomyelitis.

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