Study: Prolonged altitude training could reduce endurance

A study by Oxford University has revealed prolonged altitude training could reduce endurance. This is very interesting since many elite athletes train at altitude in places such as Mammoth Lakes, CA. If these athletes’ performance starts to degrade, will we see a change in the way these athletes train by limiting the time spent at altitude?

From the article:
Athletes from many endurance disciplines use altitude training as part of their yearly training programme. England footballers, as with many of the teams in the World Cup, spent time at altitude acclimatising for the competition in South Africa.

The body reacts to the low levels of oxygen at high altitude, first of all by breathing harder and the heart pumping more blood, but then through producing more red blood cells and increasing the density of blood vessels in the body’s muscles. All of this serves to get more oxygen and fuel to the muscles.

However, an extended stay at altitude can bring a loss of the muscle’s ability to use oxygen to carry out work. The number of mitochondria, the oxygen-using powerhouses of the cell, falls with a prolonged stay at high altitude.

http://www.physorg.com/news197046224.html

One Response to “Study: Prolonged altitude training could reduce endurance”

  1. Is Ryan Hall a Victim of Prolonged High Altitude Training? « East River Runner Says:

    […] be the actual cause for Hall’s poor performances and fatigue? In July this blog had reported prolonged altitude training could reduce endurance. According to the study: an extended stay at altitude can bring a loss of the muscle’s ability to […]

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