Exercise intensity-dependent effects of arm and leg-cycling on cognitive performance

Autoři: Mathew Hill aff001;  Steven Walsh aff002;  Christopher Talbot aff002;  Michael Price aff001;  Michael Duncan aff001
Působiště autorů: Centre for Sport, Exercise and Life Sciences, Coventry University, Coventry, United Kingdom aff001;  Physical Activity & Life Sciences, University of Northampton, Northampton, United Kingdom aff002
Vyšlo v časopise: PLoS ONE 14(10)
Kategorie: Research Article
doi: https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0224092


Physiological responses to arm and leg-cycling are different, which may influence psychological and biological mechanisms that influence post-exercise cognitive performance. The aim of this study was to determine the effects of maximal and submaximal (absolute and relative intensity matched) arm and leg-cycling on executive function. Thirteen males (age, 24.7 ± 5.0 years) initially undertook two incremental exercise tests to volitional exhaustion for arm-cycling (82 ± 18 W) and leg-cycling (243 ± 52 W) for the determination of maximal power output. Participants subsequently performed three 20-min constant load exercise trials: (1) arm-cycling at 50% of the ergometer-specific maximal power output (41 ± 9 W), (2) leg-cycling at 50% of the ergometer-specific maximal power output (122 ± 26 W), and (3) leg-cycling at the same absolute power output as the submaximal arm-cycling trial (41 ± 9 W). An executive function task was completed before, immediately after and 15-min after each exercise test. Exhaustive leg-cycling increased reaction time (p < 0.05, d = 1.17), while reaction time reduced following exhaustive arm-cycling (p < 0.05, d = -0.62). Improvements in reaction time were found after acute relative intensity arm (p < 0.05, d = -0.76) and leg-cycling (p < 0.05, d = -0.73), but not following leg-cycling at the same absolute intensity as arm-cycling (p > 0.05). Improvements in reaction time following arm-cycling were maintained for at least 15-min post exercise (p = 0.008, d = -0.73). Arm and leg-cycling performed at the same relative intensity elicit comparable improvements in cognitive performance. These findings suggest that individuals restricted to arm exercise possess a similar capacity to elicit an exercise-induced cognitive performance benefit.

Klíčová slova:

Analysis of variance – Cognition – Cognitive psychology – Exercise – Legs – Oxygen – Reaction time


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