The influence of body weight on energy expenditure during walking on a road and on a treadmill

  • C. H. Wyndham
  • W. H. van der Walt
  • A. J. van Rensburg
  • G. G. Rogers
  • N. B. Strydom


4 oxygen consumptions were measured on 8 subjects (varying in weight from 54.4–66.1 kg) at each of 3 speeds of walking (3.2, 4.8 and 6.4 km/hr) both on a treadmill and a road. Correlations between weight and oxygen consumption of 0.76–0.96, were significant at the 0.1% level of significance, at all three speeds on both treadmill and road. The relationship between body weight and oxygen consumption is linear and is markedly affected by speed. The slope of the linear regression lines of oxygen consumption on body weight increased hyperbolically with an increase in speed. Mean oxygen consumptions at 3.2 and 4.8 km/hr were significantly higher on the road but not at 6.4 km/hr. Curves of O2 consumption/speed are non-linear and are markedly affected by body weight; both the intercept on the vertical axis and slope increases linearly with body weight.

Key words

Energy Expenditure and Body Weight Energy Expenditure while Walking at Various Speeds Body Weight and Energy Expenditure 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    Bobbert, A. C.: Energy expenditure in level and grade walking. J. appl. Physiol.15, 1015–1021 (1960).Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Brockett, J. E., Brophy, E. M., Kenishi, F., Marcinek, J. G., Grotheer, M. P., Michalowicz, W. A., Kashin, P., Grossman, M. I.: Influence of body size, body fat, nutrient intake and physical fitness in the energy expenditure of walking. Project No. 177, Med. Nutrition Lab., U.S. Army, Fitzsimmons Army Hospital, Denver, Colorado, 1956.Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Cotes, J. E., Meade, F.: The energy expenditure and mechanical energy in walking. Ergonomics3, 97–119 (1960).Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    Daniels, F., Jr., Vanderbie, J. H., Winsman, F. R.: Energy cost of treadmill walking compared to road walking. Report No. 220 of Environmental Protection Division, Q.M., Research and Development laboratory, Natick, Massa., 1953.Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Durnin, J. V. G. A., Namyslowski, L.: Individual variation in the energy expenditure of standardised activities. J. Physiol. (Lond.)143, 573–578 (1958).Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    MacDonald, I.: Statistical studies of recorded energy expenditure of man. Part II: Expenditure on walking related to weight, sex, height speed and gradient. N.A. and R.31, 739–762 (1961).Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    Miller, A. T., Bligh, C. S.: Influence of body type and body fat content in the metabolic cost of work. J. appl. Physiol.8, 139–141 (1955).Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    Passmore, R., Durnin, J. V. G. A.: Human energy expenditure. Physiol. Ind.35, 801–840 (1955).Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    Ralston, H. J.: Energy speed relation and optimal speed during level walking. Int. Z. angew. Physiol.17, 277–283 (1958).Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    —: Comparison of energy expenditure during treadmill walking and floor walking. J. appl. Physiol.15, 1156 (1960).Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Rasch, P. J., Pierson, W. R.: The relationship of body surface area, mass and indices to energy expenditure. Rev. Ann. Biol.21, 1–6 (1962).Google Scholar
  12. 12.
    Strydom, N. B., Cooke, H. M., Miller, H. D., Weiner, P.: Errors in respiratory gas analysis. Int. Z. angew. Physiol.21, 13–26 (1968).Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    Wyndham, C. H., Heyns, A. J. A.: Determinants of oxygen consumption and maximum oxygen intake of Bantu and Caucasian males. Int. Z. angew. Physiol.27, 51–75 (1969).Google Scholar
  14. 14.
    —, Strydom, N. B., van Graan, C. H., van Rensburg, A. J., Rogers, G. G., Greyson, J. S., van der Walt, W. H.: Walk or jog for health: I. S. Afr. med. J.45, 50–53 (1971).Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1971

Authors and Affiliations

  • C. H. Wyndham
    • 1
  • W. H. van der Walt
    • 1
  • A. J. van Rensburg
    • 1
  • G. G. Rogers
    • 1
  • N. B. Strydom
    • 1
  1. 1.Human Sciences LaboratoryChamber of Mines of South AfricaJohannesburgSouth Africa

Personalised recommendations