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J Sports Med Phys Fitness. 2015 Oct;55(10):1058-63.

The rate of lactate removal after maximal exercise: the effect of intensity during active recovery.



The aim of the present investigation was to determine the greater rate of lactate removal after a maximal rowing test using different intensities during active recovery.


Thirty elite male rowers performed a simulated incremental exercise protocol on rowing ergometer to determine their maximal oxygen uptake and they divided into three equal sized group according to the type of the recovery that followed the assessment. The first group (N.=10) subjected to 20 min of passive recovery, while the second (N.=10) and the third (N.=10) groups performed 20 min of active recovery using the 25% and the 50% of each individual’s maximal power output, respectively. During the recovery period, every two min were performed measurements for the assessment of blood lactate, oxygen consumption and heart rate (HR).


It was found that after 10 min of active recovery at 50% and 25% of maximal power output lactate concentration reduced by 43% and 15%, respectively, while during passive recovery lactate concentration found to be slightly elevated by 1%. It was also found that during recovery period, HR, oxygen consumption and pulmonary ventilation was significant elevated at higher exercise intensity compared to lower exercise intensity and passive recovery.


It is concluded that in elite male rowers the active recovery provided higher rate of lactate removal compared to passive recovery. Moreover, active recovery at 50% of maximal power output had better results in lactate clearance compared to the active recovery of lower intensity (25% of maximal power output).

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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