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Revista Brasileira de Medicina do Esporte
Print version ISSN 1517-8692
CUNHA, Verusca Najara de Carvalho et al. Swimming training at anaerobic threshold intensity improves the functional fitness of older rats. Rev Bras Med Esporte [online]. 2008, vol.14, n.6, pp. 533-538. ISSN 1517-8692. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S1517-86922008000600012.
The effects of aerobic training at the lactate threshold (LT) intensity were analyzed in fifteen older rats (~448 days old). Both the trained (n = 9) and control (n = 6) groups were submitted to an incremental exercise test before and after four weeks of training. The incremental exercise test consisted of an initial load of 1% BM and 1% increments at each 3-min with blood lactate measurements. The LT was determined by visual inspection of the blood lactate breakpoint. The training program comprised of 30-min swimming/day, 5 days/week, loaded with 5% body mass (BM), or control without exercise. Significant increase on the LT intensity after training (pre = 4.5 ± 1.1 vs. post = 5.4 ± 0.9% BM). The maximal workload reached at the end of incremental test increased significantly from 39.7 ± 7.5 g on pre to 48.4 ± 10.5 g at post training, with no changes for the control group (44.7 ± 8 vs. 45.3 ± 9.3 g). The body mass of the trained group did not change as a result of 4 weeks of swimming at LT intensity (641.0 ± 62.0 to 636.0 ± 72.7 g; p > 0.05). On the other hand, the untrained group increased significantly the BM from 614.0 ± 80.0 to 643.0 ± 72.7 g. The maximal workload, as expressed both in relation to absolute and relative values (i.e. %BM) increased significantly only as a result of training. It was concluded that four weeks of swimming training at LT intensity resulted in aerobic fitness improvement and body mass maintenance of older rats.
Keywords : aerobic fitness; anaerobic threshold; aged animals.