Encyclopedia of Exercise Medicine in Health and Disease

2012 Edition
| Editors: Frank C. Mooren

Metabolic Equivalents (METs)

Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-540-29807-6_2654

When the energy cost of a given task is expressed in METs, or metabolic equivalents, it is shown as a ratio to resting energy expenditure. This is a useful tactic in exercise prescription, since the energy expenditure required of a large and heavy individual is increased in proportion to their resting metabolism, which in turn reflects their large size. One MET is equal to 3.5 ml of O2 per kg of body weight per minute, or 1 kcal per kg of body weight per hour. Any activity above resting requires greater oxygen consumption, and therefore, yields a higher MET level.

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© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2012