Lactate and Rate of Perceived Exertion Responses of Athletes Training for and Competing in a Mixed Martial Arts Event

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Lactate and rate of perceived exertion (RPE) was monitored in 6 male subjects training for and competing in a mixed martial arts event held in Butte, Montana, to determine 1) the metabolic demands of the sport and 2) the effectiveness of the prebout interval training programs chosen to help prepare the competitors for this event. The training lactate measurements ranged from 8.1 to 19.7 mmol·L−1, and the training RPE levels ranged from 15 to 19 on Borg's Category Scale of perceived exertion, the scores of which ranged from 6 to 20. The postbout lactate measurements ranged from 10.2 to 20.7 mmol·L−1, and the post-bout RPE measurements ranged from 13 to 19. Of the 4 subjects that had both training and postbout lactate measurements, 3 had obtained lactate levels during training that exceeded lactate levels immediately after the bout. This indicated that, when using lactate measurements as a benchmark, the conditioning training was effective for these 3 athletes. When we used RPE scores as a benchmark, the conditioning was effective for all 4 subjects because all subjects reached 18-19 during their training, which was at least as high as their reported post-bout RPE levels.

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