Journal Article

Effect of work:rest ratio on cycling performance following sprint interval training: A randomised control trial


Sprint interval training (SIT) has been shown to improve performance measures in a range of individuals, and it is understood that different responses can be elicited from different training protocols. However, consideration of changes in work: rest ratios could offer important insight into optimising training programmes. The purpose of this study was to investigate the effect of three different work: rest ratios on exercise performance. Thirty-six male and female participants were randomly allocated to one of three training groups, or a non-training control group. Training consisted of 10x6 second ‘all-out’ sprints on a cycle ergometer, with a 1:8, 1:10 or 1:12 work: rest ratio. Performance data, including peak power output, performance decrement, and 10km time trial performance data were collected before and after 2-weeks of SIT. There were significant (p ≤ 0.05) improvements in all parameters for the training groups, but no changes in the control condition. Peak power increased by 57.2W, 50.7W and 53.7W in the 1:8, 1:10 and 1:12 groups respectively, with no significant differences in response between conditions. Time trial performance improved significantly in all three training conditions (29.4s, 8.7s, and 25.1s in the 1:8, 1:10 and 1:12 groups), while worsening in the control group. All training conditions resulted in significant improvements in performance, but there were no significant differences in improvement for any of the groups. Any of the three stated work: rest ratios would be appropriate for use with athletes and allow some level of personal preference for those interested in using the protocol.

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Lloyd Jones, Molly C.
Morris, Martyn G.
Jakeman, John R.

Oxford Brookes departments

Department of Sport, Health Sciences and Social Work


Year of publication: 2019
Date of RADAR deposit: 2019-12-12

Creative Commons License This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License

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This RADAR resource is the Accepted Manuscript of Effect of work: rest ratio on cycling performance following sprint interval training: A randomised control trial


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