Physiologic responses to maximal treadmill and deep water running in men and women

Am J Sports Med. 1991 Nov-Dec;19(6):612-4. doi: 10.1177/036354659101900610.


Maximal physiologic responses to treadmill running and deep water running using a flotation device were compared in 12 trained men and 12 trained women. Although the men had significantly higher ventilation volumes, VO2max (liters of oxygen per minute and milliliters of oxygen per kilogram per minute), there were no significant differences in maximal heart rates or respiratory exchange ratios between the sexes. Significantly lower ventilation volumes, VO2max (LO2.min-1 and, and heart rates were obtained in response to maximal water running compared to treadmill running, regardless of gender. Neither the men's nor women's maximal respiratory exchange ratios were significantly different between modes. The analysis of variance indicated that there were no significant interactions for any of the maximal responses to the tests between the sexes. The magnitude of these differences is similar to that found between treadmill running and cycling ergometry and should not preclude deep water running as a training technique. Caution, however, is advised if the training intensity is to be prescribed on the basis of land-determined heart rates.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Analysis of Variance
  • Body Composition
  • Energy Metabolism
  • Exercise Test*
  • Female
  • Heart Rate
  • Hemodynamics*
  • Humans
  • Hydrostatic Pressure
  • Male
  • Oxygen Consumption
  • Running*
  • Water


  • Water