International Journal of Biometeorology

, Volume 58, Issue 6, pp 1393–1402 | Cite as

Differences in the heat stress associated with white sportswear and being semi-nude in exercising humans under conditions of radiant heat and wind at a wet bulb globe temperature of greater than 28 °C

  • Michio Tsuji
  • Masashi Kume
  • Hideyuki Tuneoka
  • Tetsuya YoshidaEmail author
Original Paper


This study investigated whether wearing common white sportswear can reduce heat stress more than being semi-nude during exercise of different intensities performed under radiant heat and wind conditions, such as a hot summer day. After a 20-min rest period, eight male subjects performed three 20 min sessions of cycling exercise at a load intensity of 20 % or 50 % of their peak oxygen uptake (VO2peak) in a room maintained at a wet bulb globe temperature (WBGT) of 28.7 ± 0.1 °C using two spot lights and a fan (0.8 m/s airflow). Subjects wore common white sportswear (WS) consisting of a long-sleeved shirt (45 % cotton and 55 % polyester) and short pants (100 % polyester), or only swimming pants (SP) under the semi-nude condition. The mean skin temperature \( \left(\overline{T} sk\right) \) was greater when subjects wore SP than WS under both the 20 % and 50 % exercise conditions. During the 50 % exercise, the rating of perceived exertion (RPE) and thermal sensation (TS), and the increases in esophageal temperature (ΔTes) and heart rate were significantly higher (P < 0.001–0.05), or tended to be higher (P < 0.07), in the WS than SP trials at the end of the third 20-min exercise session. The total sweat loss (m sw,tot) was also significantly higher in the WS than in the SP trials (P < 0.05). However, during the 20 % exercise, the m sw,tot during exercise, and the ΔTes, RPE and TS at the end of the second and third sessions of exercise did not differ significant between conditions. The heat storage (S), calculated from the changes in the mean body temperature (0.9Tes + 0.1 \( \overline{T} sk \)), was significantly lower in the WS trials than in the SP trials during the 20 min resting period before exercise session. However, S was similar between conditions during the 20 % exercise, but was greater in the WS than in the SP trials during 50 % exercise. These results suggest that, under conditions of radiant heat and wind at a WBGT greater than 28 °C, the heat stress associated with wearing common WS is similar to that of being semi-nude during light exercise, but was greater during moderate exercise, and the storage of body heat can be reduced by wearing WS during rest periods.


Radiant load Wind Total sweat loss Heat storage 


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Copyright information

© ISB 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Michio Tsuji
    • 1
  • Masashi Kume
    • 2
  • Hideyuki Tuneoka
    • 3
  • Tetsuya Yoshida
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Graduate School of Science and TechnologyKyoto Institute of TechnologySakyo-kuJapan
  2. 2.Kyoto Bunkyo Junior CollegeKyotoJapan
  3. 3.Kyoto Institute of TechnologyKyotoJapan

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