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Training in hypoxia vs. training in normoxia in high-altitude natives

Favier, R.
Spielvogel, H.
Desplanches, D.
Grunenfelder, A.
Leuenberger, M.
Tuscher, L.
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Published in Journal of applied physiology: respiratory, environmental and exercise physiology. 1995, vol. 78, no. 6, p. 2286-2293
Abstract To determine the interactions between endurance training and hypoxia on maximal exercise performance, we performed a study on sedentary high-altitude natives who were trained in normoxia at the same relative (n = 10) or at the same absolute (n = 10) intensity of work as hypoxia-trained subjects (n = 10). The training-induced improvement of maximal oxygen uptake (VO2max) in hypoxia-trained subjects was similar to that obtained in normoxia-trained sea-level natives submitted to the same training protocol (H. Hoppeler, H. Howald, K. Conley, S. L. Lindstedt, H. Claassen, P. Vock, and E. W. Weibel. J. Appl. Physiol. 59: 320-327, 1985). Training at the same absolute work intensity in the presence of increased oxygen delivery failed to provide a further increase in VO2max. VO2max was not improved to a greater extent by simultaneously increasing absolute work intensity and O2 delivery during the training sessions. In addition, training in normoxia is accompanied by an increased blood lactate accumulation during maximal exercise, leading to greater drops in arterial pH, bicarbonate concentration, and base excess. We conclude that, in high-altitude natives, 1) training at altitude does not provide any advantage over training at sea level for maximal aerobic capacity, whether assessed in chronic hypoxia or in acute normoxia; 2) VO2max improvement with training cannot be further enhanced by increasing O2 availability alone or in combination with an increased work intensity during the exercising sessions; and 3) training in normoxia in these subjects results in a reduced buffer capacity.
Keywords AdultAltitudeAnoxia/ metabolismBicarbonates/metabolismExercise/ physiologyHeart RateHemodynamicsHumansLactates/bloodLactic AcidMaleOxygen/metabolismRespiration
PMID: 7665431
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FAVIER, R. et al. Training in hypoxia vs. training in normoxia in high-altitude natives. In: Journal of applied physiology: respiratory, environmental and exercise physiology, 1995, vol. 78, n° 6, p. 2286-2293.

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Deposited on : 2010-08-06

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