Effect of combined active recovery from supramaximal exercise on blood lactate disappearance in trained and untrained man

Int J Sports Med. 2005 Dec;26(10):874-9. doi: 10.1055/s-2005-837464.


The purpose of this study was to determine the effect of different modalities of individualized active recovery on blood lactate disappearance after supramaximal exercise in subjects with different levels of aerobic fitness. Fourteen healthy subjects (7 trained and 7 untrained subjects mean age 20 +/- 1.5 and 19.5 +/- 1.5, respectively) participated in this study. They performed three supramaximal intermittent exercises at 60 % of the time to exhaustion at 120 % of the maximum aerobic power (MAP) with 5-min recovery periods (2 x 5 min). The third exercise was followed by 20 min of recovery. The effects of four types of recovery were compared in trained and untrained subjects: passive recovery (PR), an active recovery at an intensity corresponding to the first anaerobic ventilatory threshold minus 20 % (VT1), an active recovery at an intensity corresponding to the second anaerobic ventilatory threshold minus 20 % (VT2) and a combined active recovery (CR) which consisted of 7 min at VT2 followed by 13 min at VT1. Blood lactate levels were measured at rest and during the recovery periods. Peak blood lactate after supramaximal exercise was observed significantly earlier with VT2 and CR (4th min) than VT1 and PR (7th min) in trained and in untrained subjects. Combined active recovery (CR) showed a significantly faster lactate disappearance than did PR, VT1, or VT2 from the 7th min of recovery in trained subjects (p < 0.05) and at the 20th min in untrained subjects (p < 0.05). CR and VT2 conditions showed earlier peak blood lactate (4th min) than PR or VT1 (7th min). Blood lactate disappearance was faster in trained than untrained subjects during combined active recovery. This result suggests that the level of physical fitness plays an important role mainly in the pattern of blood lactate decrease during combined active recovery.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Ergometry
  • Exercise / physiology*
  • Heart Rate / physiology
  • Humans
  • Lactic Acid / blood*
  • Male
  • Oxygen Consumption / physiology
  • Physical Endurance / physiology*
  • Physical Fitness / physiology*
  • Recovery of Function / physiology*
  • Rest / physiology
  • Time Factors


  • Lactic Acid