Individual’s one-repetition maximum (1-RM) is required to calculate and prescribe intensity for resistance training, while testing protocols enhance the risk of injuries and are time-consuming.
The aim of the present study was to assess the accuracy of 1-RM prediction from ratings of perceived exertion (RPE) of resistance exercises performed at submaximal sets (intensity and volume) in older adult males before and after a 12-week rehabilitation program.
18 untrained subjects (70.4 ± 4.5 years) first completed a 1-RM direct assessment with a horizontal leg press pre- and post-training. Thereafter, participants performed, in a random order, 2-repetition sets with loads unknown to them (corresponding to 20, 45 and 70 % of 1-RM). The RPE was recorded immediately after the sets. That RPE associated to its corresponding load was subjected to a linear regression analysis to extrapolate the maximal RPE score and its corresponding 1-RM.
RPE and relative intensities of sets appeared related pre- [r 2 = 0.59, standard error of estimate (SEE) = 13.3 %] and post-training (r 2 = 0.83, SEE = 8.1 %). Differences between measured and predicted 1-RM were reduced from the beginning to the end of training but standard deviations remained high (17.4 ± 11.8 vs. 4.2 ± 11.1 kg). Pre-training, 1-RM expressed relatively to body weight was negatively related with the errors of 1-RM predictions (r 2 = 0.39, p = 0.03).
In older subjects, RPE may be used to predict 1-RM; however, the predicted value deviates considerably from the measured one, necessitating cautious application. Importantly, this method allows to capture training-induced change in 1-RM, thus making possible assessing training’s effectiveness and allowing its modification if necessary.
This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access.
Buy single article
Instant access to the full article PDF.
Price includes VAT for USA
Subscribe to journal
Immediate online access to all issues from 2019. Subscription will auto renew annually.
This is the net price. Taxes to be calculated in checkout.
Baumgartner RN, Koehler KM, Gallagher D et al (1998) Epidemiology of sarcopenia among the elderly in New Mexico. Am J Epidemiol 147:755–763
Fiatarone MA, O’Neill EF, Ryan ND et al (1994) Exercise training and nutritional supplementation for physical frailty in very elderly people. N Engl J Med 330:1769–1775. doi:10.1056/NEJM199406233302501
Hunter GR, McCarthy JP, Bamman MM (2004) Effects of resistance training on older adults. Sports Med 34:329–348
Chodzko-Zajko WJ, Proctor DN, American College of Sports Medicine et al (2009) American College of Sports Medicine position stand. exercise and physical activity for older adults. Med Sci Sports Exerc 41:1510–1530. doi:10.1249/MSS.0b013e3181a0c95c
Peterson MD, Rhea MR, Sen A, Gordon PM (2010) Resistance exercise for muscular strength in older adults: a meta-analysis. Ageing Res Rev 9:226–237. doi:10.1016/j.arr.2010.03.004
Niewiadomski W, Laskowska D, Gasiorowaska A et al (2008) Determination and prediction of one repetition maximum (1RM): safety considerations. J Hum Kinet 19:109–120
Ploutz-Snyder LL, Giamis EL (2001) Orientation and familiarization to 1RM strength testing in old and young women. J Strength Cond Res 15:519–523
Mayhew JL, Prinster JL, Ware JS et al (1995) Muscular endurance repetitions to predict bench press strength in men of different training levels. J Sports Med Phys Fitness 35:108–113
Reynolds JM, Gordon TJ, Robergs RA (2006) Prediction of one repetition maximum strength from multiple repetition maximum testing and anthropometry. J Strength Cond Res 20:584–592. doi:10.1519/R-15304.1
Wood TM, Maddalozzo GF, Harter RA (2002) Accuracy of seven equations for predicting 1-RM performance of apparently healthy, sedentary older adults. Meas Phys Educ Exerc Sci 6:67–94
Knutzen KM, Brilla LR, Caine D (1999) Validity of 1RM prediction equations for older adults. J Strength Cond Res 13:242–246
Coquart JBJ, Eston RG, Grosbois J-M et al (2010) Prediction of peak oxygen uptake from age and power output at RPE 15 in obese women. Eur J Appl Physiol 110:645–649. doi:10.1007/s00421-010-1524-5
Al-Rahamneh HQ, Eston RG (2011) The validity of predicting peak oxygen uptake from a perceptually guided graded exercise test during arm exercise in paraplegic individuals. Spinal Cord 49:430–434. doi:10.1038/sc.2010.139
Smith AE, Eston RG, Norton B, Parfitt G (2014) A perceptually-regulated exercise test predicts peak oxygen uptake in older active adults. J Aging Phys Act. doi:10.1123/japa.2013-0213
Eston R, Evans HJL (2009) The validity of submaximal ratings of perceived exertion to predict one repetition maximum. J Sports Sci Med 8:567–573
Holmin JS, Norman JF (2012) Aging and weight-ratio perception. PLoS One 7:e47701. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0047701
Groslambert A, Mahon AD (2006) Perceived exertion : influence of age and cognitive development. Sports Med 36:911–928
Hunter GR, Wetzstein CJ, McLafferty CL Jr et al (2001) High-resistance versus variable-resistance training in older adults. Med Sci Sports Exerc 33:1759–1764
Shaw CE, McCully KK, Posner JD (1995) Injuries during the one repetition maximum assessment in the elderly. J Cardpulm Rehabil 15:283–287
Kraemer WJ, Fry AC (1995) Strength testing: development and evaluation of methodology. In: Maud P, Nieman DC (eds) Fitness and sports medicine: A health-related approach. Bull Publishing, Palo Alto
Borg G (1998) Perceived exertion and pain scales. Human Kinetics, Champaign
Testa M, Noakes TD, Desgorces F-D (2012) Training state improves the relationship between rating of perceived exertion and relative exercise volume during resistance exercises. J Strength Cond Res Natl Strength Cond Assoc 26:2990–2996. doi:10.1519/JSC.0b013e31824301d1
Lagally KM, Robertson RJ, Gallagher KI et al (2002) Perceived exertion, electromyography, and blood lactate during acute bouts of resistance exercise. Med Sci Sports Exerc 34:552–559 (discussion 560)
Gearhart RF Jr, Goss FL, Lagally KM et al (2002) Ratings of perceived exertion in active muscle during high-intensity and low-intensity resistance exercise. J Strength Cond Res 16:87–91
Groslambert A, Grange CC, Perrey S et al (2006) Effects of aging on perceived exertion and pain during arm cranking in women 70 to 80 YEARS OLD. J Sports Sci Med 5:208–214
Grange CC, Maire J, Groslambert A et al (2004) Perceived exertion and rehabilitation with arm crank in elderly patients after total hip arthroplasty: a preliminary study. J Rehabil Res Dev 41:611–620
Pandolf KB, Burse RL, Goldman RF (1975) Differentiated ratings of perceived exertion during physical conditioning of older individuals using leg-weight loading. Percept Mot Skills 40:563–574
Norman JF, Norman HF, Swindle JM et al (2009) Aging and the discrimination of object weight. Perception 38:1347–1354
Micklewright D, Papadopoulou E, Swart J, Noakes T (2010) Previous experience influences pacing during 20 km time trial cycling. Br J Sports Med 44:952–960. doi:10.1136/bjsm.2009.057315
Garcin M, Mille-Hamard L, Billat V (2004) Influence of aerobic fitness level on measured and estimated perceived exertion during exhausting runs. Int J Sports Med 25:270–277. doi:10.1055/s-2004-819939
Parikh PJ, Cole KJ (2012 ) Handling objects in old age: forces and moments acting on the object. J Appl Physiol (1985) 112:1095–1104. doi:10.1152/japplphysiol.01385.2011
Vlaeyen JW, Kole-Snijders AM, Boeren RG, van Eek H (1995) Fear of movement/(re)injury in chronic low back pain and its relation to behavioral performance. Pain 62:363–372
Ben Belgith A, Ahmaidi S, Maille P et al (2012) Quantification de la charge d’entraînement imposée au footballeur professionnel en phase de réhabilitation athlétique post-blessure. Sci Sports 27:169–174
Eston R (2012) Use of ratings of perceived exertion in sports. Int J Sports Physiol Perform 7:175–182
Conflict of interest
On behalf of all authors, the corresponding author states that there is no conflict of interest.
Human and Animal Rights
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. This article does not contain any studies with animals performed by any of the author.
Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.
About this article
Cite this article
Desgorces, F., Thomasson, R., Aboueb, S. et al. Prediction of one-repetition maximum from submaximal ratings of perceived exertion in older adults pre- and post-training. Aging Clin Exp Res 27, 603–609 (2015). https://doi.org/10.1007/s40520-015-0334-3
- Strength training
- Perceived exertion
- One-repetition maximum