Circadian rhythms in two types of anaerobic cycle leg exercise: force-velocity and 30-s Wingate tests

Int J Sports Med. 2004 Jan;25(1):14-9. doi: 10.1055/s-2003-45226.


Previous studies investigating the impact of circadian rhythms on performance during anaerobic cycle leg exercise have yielded conflicting results. The purpose of the present investigation was firstly, to determine the effect of the time of day on anaerobic performance during a force-velocity test on a cycle ergometer (F-V) and the Wingate test and secondly, to relate any changes in anaerobic performance to the circadian rhythm in oral temperature. Nineteen subjects volunteered to take part in the study. In a balanced and randomized study design, subjects were measured for maximal power (P (max)) (force-velocity test), peak power (P (peak)) and mean power (P (mean)) (Wingate test) on six separate occasions. These were at 02 : 00, 06 : 00, 10 : 00, 14 : 00, 18 : 00 and 22 : 00 hours on separate days. There was an interval of 28 h between two successive tests. Oral temperature and body mass were measured before each test. Body mass did not vary during the day but a significant time of day effect was observed for the oral temperature with an acrophase at 18 : 22 +/- 00 : 34 hours. A significant circadian rhythm was found for P (max) with an acrophase at 17 : 10 +/- 00 : 52 hours and an amplitude of 7 %. A time-of-day effect was significant for F (0) and V (0). Also a significant circadian rhythm was observed for P (peak) with an acrophase at 17 : 24 +/- 00 : 36 hours and an amplitude of 7.6 % and for P (mean) with an acrophase at 18 : 00 +/- 01 : 01 hours and an amplitude of 11.3 %. The results indicated that oral temperature, P (peak), P (mean) and P (max) varied concomitantly during the day. These results suggest that there was a circadian rhythm in anaerobic performance during cycle tests. The recording of oral temperature allows one to estimate the time of occurrence of maximal and minimal values in the circadian rhythm of anaerobic performance.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Anaerobiosis
  • Analysis of Variance
  • Body Temperature / physiology
  • Circadian Rhythm / physiology*
  • Exercise / physiology*
  • Exercise Test
  • Humans
  • Least-Squares Analysis
  • Leg / physiology*
  • Male
  • Physical Exertion / physiology