Comparative study of lung functions in swimmers and runners

Indian J Physiol Pharmacol. 2012 Jan-Mar;56(1):100-4.


In the present study pulmonary function tests of two different groups of athletes, swimmers and runners were studied and compared. Thirty swimmers who used to swim a distance of two to three kilometers per day regularly were compared with age, sex, height, and weight matched thirty middle distance runners. Runners and swimmers selected for this study were undergoing training since last three years. Tidal Volume (TV), forced Vital Capacity (FVC). Forced expiratory volume in one second (FEV1) and maximum voluntary ventilation (MVV) were higher in swimmers than runners. Swimming exercise affects lung volume measurements as respiratory muscles including diaphragm of swimmers are required to develop greater pressure as a consequence of immersion in water during respiratory cycle, thus may lead to functional improvement in these muscles and also alterations in elasticity of lung and chest wall or of ventilatory muscles, leading to an improvement in forced vital capacity and other lung functions of swimmers than runners.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Forced Expiratory Volume
  • Humans
  • Lung / physiology*
  • Respiration
  • Running / physiology*
  • Swimming / physiology*
  • Young Adult