Cerebral and Muscle Oxygenation during Repeated Shuttle Run Sprints with Hypoventilation

Int J Sports Med. 2019 May;40(6):376-384. doi: 10.1055/a-0836-9011. Epub 2019 Mar 21.


Ten highly-trained Jiu-Jitsu fighters performed 2 repeated-sprint sessions, each including 2 sets of 8 x ~6 s back-and-forth running sprints on a tatami. One session was carried out with normal breathing (RSN) and the other with voluntary hypoventilation at low lung volume (RSH-VHL). Prefrontal and vastus lateralis muscle oxyhemoglobin ([O2Hb]) and deoxyhemoglobin ([HHb]) were monitored by near-infrared spectroscopy. Arterial oxygen saturation (SpO2), heart rate (HR), gas exchange and maximal blood lactate concentration ([La]max) were also assessed. SpO2 was significantly lower in RSH-VHL than in RSN whereas there was no difference in HR. Muscle oxygenation was not different between conditions during the entire exercise. On the other hand, in RSH-VHL, cerebral oxygenation was significantly lower than in RSN (-6.1±5.4 vs-1.5±6.6 µm). Oxygen uptake was also higher during the recovery periods whereas [La]max tended to be lower in RSH-VHL. The time of the sprints was not different between conditions. This study shows that repeated shuttle-run sprints with VHL has a limited impact on muscle deoxygenation but induces a greater fall in cerebral oxygenation compared with normal breathing conditions. Despite this phenomenon, performance is not impaired, probably because of a higher oxygen uptake during the recovery periods following sprints.

MeSH terms

  • Athletic Performance / physiology*
  • Brain / metabolism*
  • Heart Rate
  • Hemoglobins / metabolism
  • Humans
  • Hypoventilation
  • Lactic Acid / blood
  • Muscle, Skeletal / metabolism*
  • Oxygen / blood
  • Oxygen Consumption / physiology
  • Oxyhemoglobins / metabolism
  • Perception
  • Physical Exertion
  • Pulmonary Gas Exchange
  • Respiration*
  • Running / physiology*
  • Spectroscopy, Near-Infrared


  • Hemoglobins
  • Oxyhemoglobins
  • Lactic Acid
  • deoxyhemoglobin
  • Oxygen