European Journal of Applied Physiology

, Volume 118, Issue 1, pp 175–184 | Cite as

Ultra-shortened time-domain HRV parameters at rest and following exercise in athletes: an alternative to frequency computation of sympathovagal balance

  • Michael R. Esco
  • Henry N. Williford
  • Andrew A. Flatt
  • Todd J. Freeborn
  • Fabio Y. Nakamura
Original Article

Abstract

Purpose

The primary purpose of this study was to determine the accuracy of the standard deviation of normal-to-normal intervals (SDNN) to root mean square of successive normal-to-normal interval differences (RMSSD) ratio from 1-min recordings (SDNN:RMSSD1−min) compared to criterion recordings, as well as its relationship to low-frequency-to-high-frequency ratio (LF:HF) at rest and following maximal exercise in a group of collegiate athletes.

Method

Twenty athletes participated in the study. Heart rate variability (HRV) data were measured for 5 min before and at 5–10 and 25–30 min following a maximal exercise test. From each 5-min segment, the frequency-domain measures of HF, LF, and LF:HF ratio were analyzed. Time-domain measures of SDNN, RMSSD, and SDNN:RMSSD ratio were also analyzed from each 5-min segment, as well as from randomly selected 1-min recordings.

Result

The 1-min values of SDNN, RMSSD, and SDNN:RMSSD provided no significant differences and nearly perfect intra-class correlations (ICCs ranged from 0.97 to 1.00, p < 0.001 for all) to the criterion measures from 5-min recordings. In addition, SDNN, RMSSD, and SDNN:RMSSD from the 1-min segments provided very large to nearly perfect correlations (r values ranged from 0.71 to 0.97, p < 0.001 for all) to LF, HF, and LF:HF, respectively, at each time point.

Conclusion

The findings of the study suggest that ultra-shortened time-domain markers may be useful surrogates of the frequency-domain parameters for tracking changes in sympathovagal activity in athletes.

Keywords

Heart rate variability RMSSD Time-domain Cardiovascular-autonomic control Athlete monitoring 

Abbreviations

HRV

Heart rate variability

ECG

Electrocardiogram or electrocardiographic

HF

High frequency

LF

Low frequency

LF:HF

LF-to-HF ratio

RMSSD

Root mean square of successive normal-to-normal interval differences

SDNN

Standard deviation of normal-to-normal intervals

RMSSD:SDNN

RMSSD-to-SDNN ratio

PRE

Pre-exercise resting period

POST1

Period between 5- and 10-min post-exercise

POST2

Period between 25- and 30-min post-exercise

ICC

Intra-class correlations

r

Pearson’s correlation coefficient

Notes

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethical approval

The study was approved by The University of Alabama’s Institutional Review Board.

Research involving human and animal participants

The research involved human participants. All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.

Informed consent

Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Exercise Physiology Laboratory, Department of KinesiologyUniversity of AlabamaTuscaloosaUSA
  2. 2.Department of KinesiologyAuburn University MontgomeryMontgomeryUSA
  3. 3.Biodynamics Laboratory, Department of Health SciencesArmstrong State UniversitySavannahUSA
  4. 4.Department of Electrical and Computer EngineeringUniversity of AlabamaTuscaloosaUSA
  5. 5.Department of Medicine and Aging Sciences“G. d’Annunzio” University of Chieti-PescaraChietiItaly
  6. 6.The College of Healthcare SciencesJames Cook UniversityDouglasAustralia

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