Skip to main content

Effects of daily and intermittent exposures on heat acclimation of women


Twelve women, who differed in physical condition and body size, were heat acclimated utilizing either a daily or intermittent (every 3rd day) exposure pattern in an environmental chamber. The women walked for 100 min at 5.2 km/h up a 2.5% grade on a motor-driven treadmill Climatic chamber conditions were 46.5°C Ta, 24.5°C Twb ± 0.5°C. Although individual acclimation varied, significant reduction in heat strain was observed in all subjects, e.g., the ability to complete the assigned task with increasing ease, a decrease in working heart rate, a decrease in rectal temperature rise, a decrease in mean skin temperature, an increase in sweat rate, an increase in evaporative rate, and a decrease in heat storage. The pattern of heat exposures, daily or every third day, had no discernible effect on the rate of heat acclimation. The highly conditioned subjects showed less physiological strain, particularly during the first few heat exposures, and maintained some relative advantage throughout the series of 10 exposures. Body size, in the range studied, appeared to exert little influence on the amount of thermal strain.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.


  • ALLEN, T.H., PENG, M.T., CHEN, K.P., HUANG, T.F., CHANG, C. and FANG, H.S. (1956): Prediction of total adiposity from skinfolds and the curvilinear relationship between external and internal adiposity. Metabolism., 5: 346–352.

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  • BAR-OR, O., LUNDEGREN, H.M. and BUSKIRK, E.R. (1969): Heat tolerance of exercising obese and lean women. J. appl. Physiol., 26: 403–409.

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  • BUSKIRK, E.R., LUNDEGREN, H. and MAGNUSSON, L. (1965): Heat acclimatization patterns in obese and lean individuals. Ann. N.Y. Acad. Sci., 131: 637–653.

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  • DUBOIS, D. and DUBOIS, E.F. (1915): The measurement of the surface area of man. Arch. intern. Med., 15: 868–881.

    Google Scholar 

  • FEIN, J.T. (1972): Effects of continuous and intermittent work on heat acclimation of women. Unpublished doctoral thesis, University of Iowa.

  • GISOLFI, C. and ROBINSON, S. (1969): Relations between physical training, acclimatization and heat tolerance. J. appl. Physiol., 26: 530–534.

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  • HAYMES, E.M., BUSKIRK, E.R., HODGSON, J.L., LUNDEGREN, H.M. and NICHOLAS, W.C. (1974): Heat tolerance of exercising lean and heavy prepubertal girls. J. appl. Physiol., 36: 556–571.

    Google Scholar 

  • HERTIG, B.A., BELDING, H.S., KRANING, K.K., BATTERTON, D.L., SMITH, C.R. and SARGENT, F. (1963): Artificial acclimatization of women to heat. J. appl. Physiol., 18: 383–386.

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  • LIND, A.R., and BASS, D.E. (1963): Optimal exposure time for development of acclimatization to heat. Fed. Proc., 22: 704–708.

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  • PIWONKA, R.W., ROBINSON, S., GRAY, V.L. and MANALIS, R.S. (1965): Preacclimatization of men to heat by training. J. appl. Physiol., 20: 379–384.

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  • ROBINSON, S. (1942): The effect of body size upon energy exchange in work. Amer. J. Physiol., 136: 363–368.

    Google Scholar 

  • SHVARTZ, E., SAAR, E. and BENOR, D. (1973): Physique and heat tolerance in hot-dry and hot-humid environments. J. appl. Physiol, 34: 799–803.

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  • STRYDOM, N.B., WYNDHAM, C.H. and BENADE, A.J.S. (1971): The responses of men weighing less than 50 kg to the standard climatic room acclimatization procedure. J.S. Afr. Min. Metall., 72: 101–104.

    Google Scholar 

  • WAGNER, J.A., ROBINSON, S., TZANKOFF, S.P. and MARINO, R.P. (1972): Heat tolerance and acclimatization to work in the heat in relation to age. J. appl. Physiol., 33: 616–622.

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  • WEINMAN, K.P., SLABOCHOVA, Z., BERNAUER, E.M., MORIMOTO, T. and SARGENT, F. (1967): Reactions of men and women to repeated exposure to humid heat. J. appl. Physiol., 22: 533–538.

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  • WINER, B.J. (1962): Statistical Principles in Experimental Design. McGraw-Hill Book Co., New York, 302–319.

    Google Scholar 

  • WYNDHAM, C.H., MORRISON, J.F. and WILLIAMS, C.G. (1965): Heat reactions of male and female Caucasians. J. appl. Physiol., 20: 357–364.

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information

Authors and Affiliations


Additional information

This work was partially supported by Grant AM 08311 from the National Institute of Arthritis, Metabolism, and Digestive Diseases, and by Grant GMO 1748 from the National Institute of General Medical Sciences.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Fein, J.T., Haymes, E.M. & Buskirk, E.R. Effects of daily and intermittent exposures on heat acclimation of women. Int J Biometeorol 19, 41–52 (1975).

Download citation

  • Received:

  • Issue Date:

  • DOI:


  • Skin Temperature
  • Heat Storage
  • Thermal Strain
  • Heat Exposure
  • Sweat Rate