The effects of low-volume high-intensity interval training and circuit training on maximal oxygen uptake

Stefan T. Birkett, Simon Nichols, Richard Sawrey, Damien Gleadall-Siddall, Gordon McGregor, Lee Ingle

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

1 Citation (Scopus)
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Abstract

Purpose: High-intensity interval training (HIIT) and circuit training (CT) are popular methods of exercise, eliciting improvements in cardiorespiratory fitness (CRF). However, direct comparisons of these two training methods are limited. We investigated the effects of HIIT and CT on CRF. 

Methods: Thirty-nine apparently healthy middle-aged participants [HIIT; mean age: 42.5 ± 12.3; V˙ O 2 max 31.5 ± 7.1 (ml kg −1  min −1 ); 52% males; CT; mean age: 41.2 ± 12.9; V˙ O 2 max 31.4 ± 6.8 (ml kg −1  min −1 ); 57% males] were randomly allocated to two sessions per week of HIIT or CT over 8 weeks. HIIT performed ten 1-min cycle-ergometry intervals at > 85% HR max , separated by ten 1-min intervals of active recovery. The CT group performed up to 40-min of CT at 60–80% HR max . CRF was measured using maximum oxygen uptake (V˙ O 2 max ), ventilatory anaerobic threshold (V˙ O 2 at VAT) and maximum oxygen pulse (V˙ O 2 /HR). 

Results: V˙ O 2 max increased by 12% following HIIT (mean difference 3.9 ml kg −1  min −1 ; 95% CI: 2.8–4.9; P < 0.001), and 3% in CT (mean difference 1.0 ml kg −1  min −1 ; 95% CI: − 0.4 to 2.0; P = 0.060). V˙ O 2 at VAT increased by 16% following HIIT (mean difference 2.4 ml kg −1  min −1 ; 95% CI: 1.6–3.1; P < 0.001) and 4% in CT (mean difference 0.7 ml kg −1  min −1 ; 95% CI: − 0.1 to 1.4; P = 0.085). V˙ O 2 /HR increased by 11% following HIIT (mean difference 1.4 ml beat −1 ; 95% CI: 0.9–2.0; P < 0.001) and 1% after CT (mean difference 0.3 ml beat −1 ; 95% CI: − 0.3 to 0.8; P = 0.318). 

Conclusion: Our study demonstrated that HIIT led to greater improvements in CRF when compared to CT. Clinical trial registration: ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT03700671.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)443-451
Number of pages9
JournalSport Sciences for Health
Volume15
Issue number2
Early online date2 May 2019
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2019

Bibliographical note

Open Access This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate
credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the
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Keywords

  • Cardiorespiratory fitness
  • Fidelity
  • HIIT
  • Maximal oxygen consumption
  • Ventilatory anaerobic threshold
  • V˙ O

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine

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