Anaerobic alactic energy assessment in middle distance swimming

Ana Sousa, Pedro Figueiredo, Paola Zamparo, João Paulo Vilas-Boas, Ricardo J. Fernandes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Citations (Scopus)


To estimate the anaerobic alactic contribution in a 200 m middle distance swimming trial by means of two different methods based: (1) on the fast component of the VO2 off-kinetics (Anarecovery) and (2) on the kinetics of maximal phosphocreatine splitting in the contracting muscle (Anapcr). Ten elite male swimmers performed a 200 m front crawl trial at maximal velocity during which VO2 was directly measured using a telemetric portable gas analyser; during the recovery period VO2 data were collected until baseline values were reached. No significant differences between the two methods were observed; mean ± SD values were 31.7 ± 2.5 and 32.6 ± 2.8 kJ, for Anapcr and Ana recovery, respectively. Despite the existence of some caveats regarding both methods for estimation of the anaerobic alactic contribution, data reported in this study indicate that both yield similar results and both allow to estimate this contribution in supra-maximal swimming trials. This has important implications on swimming energetics, since the non-inclusion of the anaerobic alactic contribution to total metabolic energy expenditure leads to an underestimation of the energy cost at supra-maximal speeds.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2153-2158
Number of pages6
JournalEuropean Journal of Applied Physiology
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • Anaerobic alactic contribution
  • Phosphocreatine
  • Recovery
  • Swimming

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Physiology (medical)


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