Cardiorespiratory, hormonal and haematological responses to submaximal cycling performed 2 days after eccentric or concentric exercise bouts.J Sports Sci. 1995 Dec; 13(6):471-9.JS
Eccentric muscle actions are known to induce delayed-onset muscle soreness (DOMS) and muscle weakness (reduced static strength and dynamic peak power output) that may persist for several days. The aim of the present study was to determine whether DOMS-inducing exercise affects physiological responses to subsequent submaximal dynamic exercise. Physiological and metabolic responses to a standardized exercise task were measured 2 days after the performance of an eccentric or concentric exercise bout. Six healthy, untrained male subjects aged 30 +/- 7 years (mean +/- S.D.) performed repeated eccentric contractions during 30 min of bench stepping (47-cm step, 15 steps min-1). On another occasion, they performed concentric contractions by walking uphill (8% incline) for 30 min at 5 km h-1, which elicited a similar heart rate response to bench stepping. Two days after the eccentric or concentric exercise, the subjects cycled for 15 min on an electrically braked cycle ergometer at a work rate (172 +/- 37 W) equivalent to 80% VO2 max. The order of the preceding treatments was randomized and the treatments were carried out 2 weeks apart. Two days after the eccentric exercise, all subjects reported leg muscle soreness and exhibited elevated levels of serum creatine kinase activity (P < 0.01) and plasma cortisol concentration (P < 0.05). After uphill walking, the subjects were not sore and serum creatine kinase activity was unchanged. Minute volume, breathing frequency, respiratory exchange ratio, heart rate, rating of perceived exertion, venous blood lactate concentration and plasma cortisol concentration were all higher (P < 0.05) during cycling after eccentric exercise compared with after uphill walking. Increases in plasma catecholamine concentrations and numbers of circulating leucocytes after cycling at 80% VO2 max for 15 min were similar under both experimental conditions, but the delayed leucocytosis (at 150 min post-exercise) was significantly greater (P < 0.01) for the post-eccentric exercise condition. We conclude that dynamic submaximal exercise performed 2 days following exercise with a large eccentric component produces physiological responses that are indicative of a higher relative exercise stress. It is likely that such effects will significantly limit the level and duration of exercise that can be achieved in subsequent training bouts over several days.