A Comparison of the Effects of Two Different Respiratory Valves on Maximal Oxygen Uptake and Heart Rate Response of Selected Distance Runners

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Morgan, Jeffry Phillip
thesis / dissertation description
This study compared selected cardiorespiratory responses obtained from two different respiratory valves, the Modified Otis-McKerrow and the Speak Easy, a mask-type valve, during maximal graded exercise testing of eleven distance runners. The results indicated that both maximal oxygen uptake and minute ventilation were significantly different. Values for maximal VO2 and VE were lower with the Speak Easy by 24 and 19 percent, respectively. Further analysis revealed that those differences were significant at submaximal levels as well. The trends in those responses show that the differences increase with increasing workload. However, maximal and submaximal heart rates were not significantly different between the two valves. These findings seriously question the integrity of the Speak Easy mask for use in high level treadmill testing and indicate that valve leakage represents a major flaw in its ability to provide accurate data.