01.08.2011 | Original Article | Ausgabe 8/2011
Physiological fitness and health adaptations from purposeful training using off-road vehicles
European Journal of Applied Physiology
- J. F. Burr, V. K. Jamnik, N. Gledhill
The purpose of this study was to evaluate fitness and health adaptations from a training program riding all-terrain vehicles (ATV) and off-road motorcycles (ORM) as the exercise stimulus. Participants (n = 58) were randomized to a control group (n = 12) or one of four experimental groups; 2 days/week ATV (n = 11), 2 days/week ORM (n = 12), 4 days/week ATV (n = 11), or 4 days/week ORM (n = 12). Aerobic fitness, musculoskeletal fitness, body composition, clinical health, and quality of life (QOL) were compared at baseline and following 6 weeks of training. In all riding groups, there were improvements in blood pressure (SBP = 9.4 ± 10.1, DBP = 5.8 ± 6.2 mmHg), fasting glucose (0.5 ± 0.7 mmol/l), subcutaneous adiposity (0.9 ± 1.1%), body mass (0.7 ± 2.7 kg), waist circumference (1.3 ± 2.5 cm), and isometric leg endurance (26 ± 44 s). All changes were of moderate to large magnitude (Cohen’s d 0.52–0.94) with the exception of a small loss of body mass (Cohen’s d = 0.27). Although changes occurred in the riding groups for aerobic power (2.9 ± 4.6 ml kg−1 min−1), leg power (172 ± 486 w), and curl-ups (13.2 ± 22.7), these changes were not significantly different from the control group. No significant alterations occurred in resting heart rate, trunk flexibility, back endurance, hand grip strength, long jump, pull/push strength, or push-up ability as a result of training. Physical domain QOL increased in all 2 days/week riders but mental domain QOL increased in all ORM, but not ATV riders regardless of volume. Ambient carbon monoxide levels while riding (<30 ppm) were within safe exposure guidelines. Positive adaptations can be gained from a training program using off-road vehicle riding as the exercise stimulus.