Proposal of a New Specific Cardiopulmonary Exercise Test for Taekwondo Athletes

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Araujo, MP, Nóbrega, ACL, Espinosa, G, Hausen, MR, Castro, RRT, Soares, PP, and Gurgel, JL. Proposal of a new specific cardiopulmonary exercise test for taekwondo athletes. J Strength Cond Res 31(6): 1525–1535, 2017—The objective of this study is to evaluate the cardiorespiratory variables of Taekwondo athletes while performing incremental exercise test on an ergometer using a ramp protocol and to propose a specific protocol for assessing these physiological variables during Taekwondo practice. Fourteen athletes participated in 2 incremental exercise tests: a treadmill exercise test (TREADtest) and a Taekwondo-specific exercise test (TKDtest). The TKDtest consists in 1-minute stages of kicks with an incremental load between then. The subjects perform kicks each time a sound signal was heard. Heart rate (HR), oxygen uptake (V[Combining Dot Above]O2), and their reserve correspondents (V[Combining Dot Above]O2R and reserve heart rate [HRR]) were divided into quartiles to verify their kinetics along the tests. Significant difference between 2 tests was found only for V[Combining Dot Above]O2R (p = 0.03). Regarding the quartiles, significant differences were found for HR in the first (p = 0.030) and second (p = 0.003). Analyzing the regression curves, significant differences were found for HR for intercept (p = 0.01) and slope (p = 0.05) and HRR for slope (p = 0.02). Analysis showed that significant reliability, with intraclass correlation coefficient (ICC), was found for the V[Combining Dot Above]O2peak (ICC = 0.855, p = 0.003), V[Combining Dot Above]O2 in ventilatory thresholds 1 (ICC = 0.709, p = 0.03) and 2 (ICC = 0.848, p = 0.003). Bland-Altman analyses reported a mean difference ± the 95% limits of agreement of 2.2 ± 8.4 ml·kg−1·min−1 to V[Combining Dot Above]O2peak. The TKDtest is reliable for measurement of cardiorespiratory variables, and the behavior of these variables differs mainly from TREADtest, probably because of the motor task performed.

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