Reliability of VOb2s max estimates from the American College of Sports Medicine submaximal cycle ergometer test
The purpose of this investigation was to determine the reliability and validity of VO2max estimates from the ACSM submaximal cycle ergometer test compared to a maximal cycle ergometer test. Thirty healthy male and female subjects aged 21-54 volunteered for this study. Each subject performed a maximal cycle ergometer test and two ACSM submaximal cycle ergometer tests. At least 48 hours elapsed between the maximal test and the first submaximal test while at least 24 hours elapsed between the two submaximal tests. Heart rates were recorded from a radio telemetry monitor and from 15 second palpation of the radial artery. A trained technician performed all palpations and was blinded from the telemetry monitor during testing to eliminate any bias. Maximal oxygen uptake (VO2max) was estimated by extrapolatingrate for each submaximal trial. To determine inter-test radio telemetry monitor (MON), to an age predicted maximal heart reliability between submaximal trials, correlational analysis andt-test were performed. A correlation of r= .863 and r= .767 were found between the two trials for MON V02max and PALP VO2max respectively. Paired t-test revealed no significant difference (p< .01) between MON V02max 1 and MON VO2max 2 or between PALP V02max 1 and PALP VO2max 2. Although there were no significant differences between trials, the mean data was often not indicative of the individual data since there were 8 MON VO2max cases and 19 PALP VO2max cases where VO2max estimates varied by > 0.5 L/min. There were significant differences between all V02max estimates when compared to measured VO2max and mean percent error in estimates for MON VO2max and PALP VO2max were 25.7% and 33.8%, respectively. The mean error of MON VO2max 1 and MON VO2max 2 were .61 and .63 L/min, respectively. The mean error for PALP VO2max 1 and PALP VO2max 2 were somewhat higher at .90 and .73 L/min, respectively. The present data indicates that a large error is present in VO2max estimates between trials and between measured and estimated VO2max. Therefore, caution must be used when interpreting VO2max estimates from the ACSM submaximal cycle ergometer test.