Purpose: To examine the utility of the Borg (6-20) and adult OMNI walk/run (0-10) ratings of perceived exertion (RPE) scales as markers of the blood lactate response to exercise.
Methods: Thirty-six (26 females and 10 males) individuals with the metabolic syndrome (mean+/-SEM: age, 45.8+/-2.0 yr; height, 168.4+/-1.3 cm; weight, 100.4+/-3.6 kg) completed a continuous peak oxygen uptake (VO2peak)/lactate threshold (LT) treadmill protocol. VO2 (mL.kg.min), blood lactate concentration (BLC, mM), and heart rate (bpm) were measured at the end of each stage. RPE were assessed at 2:15 and 2:45 of each 3-min stage using both RPE scales presented in a counterbalanced order. Participants were read standardized instructions specific to each scale. The LT and BLC of 2.5 and 4.0 mM were determined from the blood lactate-velocity relationship.
Results: The mean Borg, OMNI, and standardized (to the Borg scale) OMNI-RPE values at the LT and BLC of 2.5 mM, 4.0 mM, and peak ranged from 10.1 to 16.9, 3.1 to 8.2, and 9.9 to 17.1, respectively. No differences were observed between Borg and standardized OMNI-RPE at any exercise intensity. The correlation within and between Borg- and OMNI-RPE and the velocities associated with LT, BLC of 2.5 mM, 4.0 mM, and peak ranged from r=0.82 to 0.93 (P<0.01). Mean differences (95% CI) between the Borg- and standardized OMNI-RPE at LT, and BLC of 2.5 mM, 4.0 mM, and peak were 0.27 (-2.26, 2.80), -0.48 (-3.14, 2.18), -0.29 (-2.92, 2.35), and 0.10 (-1.65, 1.84), respectively.
Conclusion: Both the Borg and OMNI walk/run scales demonstrate predictive utility as markers of the blood lactate response to incremental exercise in individuals with the metabolic syndrome.