Format

Send to

Choose Destination
Eur J Appl Physiol. 2017 Nov;117(11):2201-2210. doi: 10.1007/s00421-017-3708-8. Epub 2017 Sep 6.

High but not moderate-intensity endurance training increases pain tolerance: a randomised trial.

Author information

1
Department of Sport and Health Sciences, Oxford Brookes University, Gipsy Lane, Oxford, OX3 0BP, UK. thomasoleary1988@gmail.com.
2
Department of Sport and Health Sciences, Oxford Brookes University, Gipsy Lane, Oxford, OX3 0BP, UK.
3
School of Life Sciences, Coventry University, Coventry, UK.

Abstract

PURPOSE:

To examine the effect of high-intensity interval training (HIIT) compared to volume-matched moderate-intensity continuous training (CONT) on muscle pain tolerance and high-intensity exercise tolerance.

METHODS:

Twenty healthy adults were randomly assigned (1:1) to either 6 weeks of HIIT [6-8 × 5 min at halfway between lactate threshold and maximal oxygen uptake (50%Δ)] or volume-matched CONT (~60-80 min at 90% lactate threshold) on a cycle ergometer. A tourniquet test to examine muscle pain tolerance and two time to exhaustion (TTE) trials at 50%Δ to examine exercise tolerance were completed pre- and post-training; the post-training TTE trials were completed at the pre-training 50%Δ (same absolute-intensity) and the post-training 50%Δ (same relative-intensity).

RESULTS:

HIIT and CONT resulted in similar improvements in markers of aerobic fitness (all P ≥ 0.081). HIIT increased TTE at the same absolute- and relative-intensity as pre-training (148 and 43%, respectively) to a greater extent than CONT (38 and -4%, respectively) (both P ≤ 0.019). HIIT increased pain tolerance (41%, P < 0.001), whereas CONT had no effect (-3%, P = 0.720). Changes in pain tolerance demonstrated positive relationships with changes in TTE at the same absolute- (r = 0.44, P = 0.027) and relative-intensity (r = 0.51, P = 0.011) as pre-training.

CONCLUSION:

The repeated exposure to a high-intensity training stimulus increases muscle pain tolerance, which is independent of the improvements in aerobic fitness induced by endurance training, and may contribute to the increase in high-intensity exercise tolerance following HIIT.

KEYWORDS:

Central nervous system; Exercise tolerance; High-intensity interval training; Muscle fatigue; Muscle pain

PMID:
28879617
DOI:
10.1007/s00421-017-3708-8
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Springer
Loading ...
Support Center