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Eur J Appl Physiol. 2009 Mar;105(5):731-8. doi: 10.1007/s00421-008-0955-8. Epub 2008 Dec 24.

Effect of high intensity intermittent training on heart rate variability in prepubescent children.

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LEMH, Laboratory of Human Movement Studies (EA 3608), Faculty of Sport Sciences, University of Lille 2, 9, rue de l'Université, 59790, Ronchin, France.


The purpose of this study was to observe the effect of high intermittent exercise training on children's heart rate variability (HRV). Thirty-eight children (age 9.6 +/- 1.2 years) were divided into an intermittent (IT, n = 22) and a control group (CON, n = 16). At baseline and after a 7-week training period, HRV parameters, peak oxygen consumption (VO(2peak)) and maximal aerobic velocity (MAV) were assessed. Training consisted of three 30-min sessions composed by short maximal and supramaximal runs at velocities ranging from 100 up to 190% of MAV. HRV was computed in time and frequency domains. Training resulted in a significant increase in MAV and VO(2peak) in IT (P < 0.05) only without any significant change in HRV parameters for the two groups. Thus, 7 weeks of high intermittent exercise training allows to improve aerobic fitness. However, this modality of training was not sufficient enough to underline a possible effect on the heart rate autonomic regulation in children.

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