The effects of different inspiratory muscle training intensities on exercising heart rate and perceived exertion

  • A. D. GethingEmail author
  • L. Passfield
  • B. Davies
Original Article


This study investigated the relationship between the intensity of an inspiratory muscle training programme and its effect on respiratory muscle strength, exercising heart rate, and ratings of perceived exertion. A total of 66 subjects were randomly assigned to one of three groups. One group trained at 100% of maximum inspiratory pressure (MIP) for 6 weeks (MAX, n=22). A second group performed 6 weeks of inspiratory muscle training at 80% of MIP (SUB, n=21) and a third control group received no inspiratory training (CON, n=23). Both the MAX and SUB training groups improved MIP relative to the control group [32 (19) cmH2O, P=0.01; 37 (25) cmH2O, P=0.001, respectively]. A significant decrease in heart rate [−6 (9) beats min−1, P=0.02] and rating of perceived exertion [−0.5 (1.4), P=0.04] was observed for the MAX group only. It is concluded that 6 weeks of both MAX and SUB training were sufficient to improve inspiratory muscle strength. However, exercising heart rate and perceived exertion decreased with MAX training only.


Exercise Resistive loading Rating of perceived exertion Respiratory Training intensity 


  1. Borg GA (1974) Perceived exertion. Exerc Sport Sci Rev 2:131–153PubMedGoogle Scholar
  2. Borg G A, Hassmen P, Lagerstrom M (1987) Perceived exertion related to heart rate and blood lactate during arm and leg exercise. Eur J Appl Physiol 56:679–685Google Scholar
  3. Boutellier U, Piwko P (1992) The respiratory system as an exercise limiting factor in normal sedentary subjects. Eur J Appl Physiol 64:145–152Google Scholar
  4. Boutellier U, Buchel R, Kundert A, Spengler C (1992) The respiratory system as an exercise limiting factor in normal trained subjects. Eur J Appl Physiol 65:347–353Google Scholar
  5. Chatham K, Baldwin J, Griffiths H, Summers L, Enright S (1999) Inspiratory muscle training improves shuttle run performance in healthy subjects. Physiotherapy 85:676–685Google Scholar
  6. Clanton TL, Dixon G, Drake J, Gadek JE (1985) Inspiratory muscle conditioning using a threshold loading device. Chest 87:62–66PubMedGoogle Scholar
  7. Coast J R, Clifford PS, Henrich TW, Stray-Gundersen J, Johnson RL Jr (1990) Maximal inspiratory pressure following maximal exercise in trained and untrained subjects. Med Sci Sports Exerc 22:811–815PubMedGoogle Scholar
  8. Fairbarn MS, Coutts KC, Pardy RL, McKenzie DC (1991) Improved respiratory muscle endurance of highly trained cyclists and the effects on maximal exercise performance. Int J Sports Med 12:66–70PubMedGoogle Scholar
  9. Green M, Road J, Sieck GC, Similowski T (2002) Tests of respiratory muscle strength. ATS/ERS Statement on Respiratory Muscle Testing. Am J Respir Crit Care Med 166:518–624CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  10. Hanel B, Secher NH (1991) Maximal oxygen uptake and work capacity after inspiratory muscle training: a controlled study. J Sports Sci 9:43–52PubMedGoogle Scholar
  11. Harms CA, Babcock MA, McClaran SR, Pegelow DF, Nickele GA, Nelson WB, Dempsey JA (1997) Respiratory muscle work compromises leg blood flow during maximal exercise. J Appl Physiol 82:1573–1583Google Scholar
  12. Inbar O, Weiner P, Azgad Y, Rotstein A, Weinstein Y (2000) Specific inspiratory muscle training in well-trained endurance athletes. Med Sci Sports Exerc 32:1233–1237PubMedGoogle Scholar
  13. Johnson BD, Babcock MA, Suman OE, Dempsey JA (1993) Exercise-induced diaphragmatic fatigue in healthy humans. J Physiol (Lond) 460:385–405Google Scholar
  14. Kellerman BA, Martin AD, Davenport PW (2000) Inspiratory strengthening effect on resistive load detection and magnitude estimation. Med Sci Sports Exerc 32:1859–1867CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  15. Kohl J, Koller EA, Brandenberger M, Cardenas M, Boutellier U (1997) Effect of exercise-induced hyperventilation on airway resistance and cycling endurance. Eur J Appl Physiol 75:305–311CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Leith DE, Bradley M (1976) Ventilatory muscle strength and endurance training. J Appl Physiol 41:508–516Google Scholar
  17. Loke J, Mahler DA, Virgulto JA (1982) Respiratory muscle fatigue after marathon running. J Appl Physiol 52:821–824PubMedGoogle Scholar
  18. Markov G, Spengler C M, Knopfli-Lenzin C, Stuessi C, Boutellier U (2001) Respiratory muscle training increases cycling endurance without affecting cardiovascular responses to exercise. Eur J Appl Physiol 85:233–239CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  19. McConnell AK, Caine MP, Sharpe G R (1997) Inspiratory muscle fatigue following running to volitional fatigue: the influence of baseline strength. Int J Sports Med 18:169–173PubMedGoogle Scholar
  20. Morgan DW, Kohrt WM, Bates BJ, Skinner JS (1987) Effects of respiratory muscle endurance training on ventilatory and endurance performance of moderately trained cyclists. Int J Sports Med 8:88–93PubMedGoogle Scholar
  21. O’Kroy JA, Coast JR (1993) Effects of flow and resistive training on respiratory muscle endurance and strength. Respiration 60:279–283PubMedGoogle Scholar
  22. Quanjer PH, Tammeling GJ, Cotes JE, Pedersen OF, Peslin R, Yernault JC (1993) Lung volumes and forced ventilatory flows Report Working Party Standardization of Lung Function Tests, European Community for Steel and Coal. Official statement of the European Respiratory Society. Eur Respir J [Suppl 16]:5–40Google Scholar
  23. Romer LM, McConnell AK, Jones DA (2002a) Effects of inspiratory muscle training on time-trial performance in trained cyclists. J Sports Sci 20:547–562CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  24. Romer LM, McConnell AK, Jones DA (2002b) Effects of inspiratory muscle training upon recovery time during high intensity repetitive sprint activity. Int J Sports Med 23:353–360CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  25. Romer LM, McConnell AK, Jones DA (2002c) Inspiratory muscle fatigue in trained cyclists: effects of inspiratory muscle training. Med Sci Sports Exerc 34:785–792CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  26. Sheel AW (2002) Respiratory muscle training in healthy individuals: physiological rationale and implications for exercise performance. Sports Med 32:567–581PubMedGoogle Scholar
  27. Sonetti DA, Wetter TJ, Pegelow DF Dempsey JA (2001) Effects of respiratory muscle training versus placebo on endurance exercise performance. Respir Physiol 127:185–199CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  28. Spengler CM, Roos M, Laube SM, Boutellier U (1999) Decreased exercise blood lactate concentrations after respiratory endurance training in humans. Eur J Appl Physiol 79:299–305CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Stuessi C, Spengler CM, Knopfli-Lenzin C, Markov G, Boutellier U (2001) Respiratory muscle endurance training in humans increases cycling endurance without affecting blood gas concentrations. Eur J Appl Physiol 84:582–586CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  30. Suzuki S, Yoshiike Y, Suzuki M, Akahori T, Hasegawa A, Okubo T (1993) Inspiratory muscle training and respiratory sensation during treadmill exercise. Chest 104:197–202PubMedGoogle Scholar
  31. Swanson GD (1998) Pulmonary training may alter exertional dyspnea and fatigue via an exercise-like training effect of a lowered heart rate. Adv Exp Med Biol 450:231–236PubMedGoogle Scholar
  32. Tzelepis GE, Vega DL, Cohen ME, McCool FD (1994) Lung volume specificity of inspiratory muscle training. J Appl Physiol 77:789–794PubMedGoogle Scholar
  33. Volianitis S, McConnell AK, Koutedakis Y, McNaughton L, Backx K, Jones DA (2001) Inspiratory training improves rowing performance. Med Sci Sports Exerc 33:803–809CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  34. Williams JS, Wongsathikun J, Boon SM, Acevedo EO (2002) Inspiratory muscle training fails to improve endurance capacity in athletes. Med Sci Sports Exerc 34:1194–1198PubMedGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Field of Health and Exercise Science, School of Applied SciencesUniversity of GlamorganPontypriddUK

Personalised recommendations