Maximal Oxygen Consumption (VO2 MAX)
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- Test Application (pdf)
- Pretest Instructions (pdf)
Cardiorespiratory endurance is defined as “the ability to perform large muscle, dynamic exercise for prolonged periods”. This ability depends on the functional state of the pulmonary, cardiovacular and skeletal muscle systems. A low level of cardiorespiratory endurance is associated with an elevated risk of premature death from all causes. High cardiorespiratory endurance is strongly protective against coronary artery disease, which is the leading cause of death in the United States.
Prior to the stress test, resting heart rate and blood pressure is measured and compared with normal values. The stress test evaluation is conducted on a treadmill or cycle ergometer. The stress test includes 12-lead electrocardiogram (ECG) which is used to assess your heart function. The criterion measure of cardiorespiratory endurance is termed Maximal Oxygen Consumption (VO2max). A metabolic cart is used to evaluate how much oxygen your body can consume during exercise. Thus, an individual with a higher VO2 max can consume more oxygen and has better cardiorespiratory endurance. This evaluation uses the best available means to assess cardiovascular fitness and allows for comparisons with normative values. It also enables our staff to determine a safe and effective exercise program for you.