An exercise physiologist's "contemporary" interpretations of the "ugly and creaking edifices" of the VO2max concept

Robergs, Robert A. (2001) An exercise physiologist's "contemporary" interpretations of the "ugly and creaking edifices" of the VO2max concept. Journal of Exercise Physiology Online, 4(1), pp. 1-44.

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The recent debate over the validity of traditional interpretations of the concept of VO2max has prompted the writing of this commentary. Rather than provide another "classic" interpretation of how VO2max is interpreted within exercise physiology (1), a more "contemporary" interpretation than that of Noakes (2-4) is provided by an exercise physiologist well-trained and widely published in exercise physiology and biochemistry. It is this author's contention that Noakes (2-4), as well as Bassett and Howley (1), have over-emphasized the classic research of Hill and related physiological interpretations pertaining to VO2max. Nevertheless, Noakes deserves to be commended for his candor in constructively criticizing how the field of exercise physiology has researched and interpreted findings on the concept of VO2max. Despite Noakes' criticisms of the validity of the concept of a VO2 plateau at VO2max, a thorough review of research, as well as the presentation of original data in this manuscript, indicates that the VO2 plateau is a measurable phenomenon in most subjects. Noakes' alternative theories for limitations to VO2 during incremental exercise to volitional exhaustion are challenged based on past research evidence. The limitations to VO2 during incremental exercise are shown to be population and environmental condition specific, and the concept of main determinants of VO2max for all people and conditions is shown to be an oversimplification and inaccurate. Novel interpretations of recent research are presented to provide a more systems oriented and research-based approach to understanding the determinants of the limitation to the continued increase in VO2 during incremental exercise testing. The challenges that confront exercise physiologists are to better define their profession, increase the standards and quality of academic preparation, improve research design, and better justify certain physiological interpretations when researching VO2max and related topics.

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ID Code: 96931
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: aerobic capacity; anaerobic capacity; anaerobic threshold; bicycle ergometer; biochemical oxygen demand; calorimetry; cardiopulmonary hemodynamics; cardiovascular performance; cell hypoxia; clinical research; electromyogram; endurance; exercise test; fast
ISSN: 1097-9751
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Current > Schools > School of Exercise & Nutrition Sciences
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2001 American Society of Exercise Physiologists
Deposited On: 04 Aug 2016 01:54
Last Modified: 06 Aug 2016 23:35

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