Assessment of Aerobic Capacity A Novel Rating Scale and Further Development of an Exercise Test including Analysis of Gas Exchange

Research output: ThesisDoctoral Thesis (compilation)


Different methods are proposed to assess the aerobic capacity. A novel scale, rating of perceived capacity (RPC) based on metabolic equivalents (METs) from 1 to 20, is presented. Selected MET values are linked to physical activities. Comparison of the rating with an exercise test in a group of women revealed that a correction based on age more accurately predicted the maximal exercise capacity. An incremental exercise test, including a constant work rate for four minutes, was introduced and combined with breath-by-breath measurements of gas exchange. Data collected every ten seconds were digitally filtered to determine selected variables. Fits of polynomials were utilised to determine the increasing contribution of the anaerobic metabolism, reflected by V'CO2, at three different thresholds. Equations were utilised to assess the time constant of V'O2 (Tau V'O2) (reflecting the time required to reach steady state) and the change in V'O2 corresponding to a specific change in work rate (delta V'O2/delta W). The repeatability of measures of the aerobic capacity (V'O2max, the three thresholds, V' O2 and delta V' O2/delta W) and of variables at rest, at sub-maximal and maximal levels was investigated. Considerable variations were found, which could mainly be explained by biological variation. Reference values for aerobic capacity were generated based on values from 25 healthy women (22–44 years) at low or moderate activity levels, and 41 healthy men (18–48 years) at moderate capacity. The results show that several variables and parameters can be determined in a single exercise test, which together describe the aerobic profile in a comprehensive manner.


Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Physiotherapy


  • kinesitherapy, revalidation, rehabilitation, Rehabilitering (medicinsk och social), Physical medicine, Time constant of V'O2, Cycle ergometer, Perceived Capacity, Perceived exertion, Heart rate, Oxygen uptake, Reference values, Oxygen kinetics, Repeatability, Thresholds
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
Supervisors/Assistant supervisor
  • [unknown], [unknown], Supervisor, External person
Award date2004 Jun 11
  • KFS AB
Print ISBNs91-628-5999-4
Publication statusPublished - 2004
Publication categoryResearch

Bibliographic note

Defence details Date: 2004-06-11 Time: 10:15 Place: Assembly Hall, Lund University Hospital External reviewer(s) Name: Jansson, Eva Title: Professor Affiliation: [unknown] --- Article: I Wisén AGM, Farazdaghi RG, Wohlfart B. A novel rating scale to predict maximal exercise capacity. Eur J Appl Physiol 2002; 87: 350–57. Article: II Wergel-Kolmert U, Wisén AGM, Wohlfart B. Repeatability of measurements of oxygen consumption, heart rate and Borg’s scale in men during ergometer cycling. Clin Physiol Func Im 2002; 22: 261–65. Article: III Wisén AGM, Wohlfart B. A refined technique for determining the respiratory gas exchange responses to anaerobic metabolism during progressive exercise – repeatability in a group of healthy men. Clin Physiol Func Im 2004; 24: 1–9. Article: IV Wisén AGM, Wohlfart B. Determination of both the time constant of O2 and D O2/DW from a single incremental exercise test – validation and repeatability. (Accepted for publication in Clin Physiol Func Im.) Article: V Wisén AGM, Wohlfart B. Aerobic and functional capacity in a group of healthy women – reference values and repeatability. Clin Physiol Func Im (submitted). The information about affiliations in this record was updated in December 2015. The record was previously connected to the following departments: Division of Physiotherapy (Closed 2012) (013042000)