1. Crapo, Erin BA

Article Content


Exercise intensity is frequently based upon heart rate (HR), rating of perceived exertion (RPE), or the Talk Test, which identifies the upper but not lower limits of exercise intensity.



The purpose of this study was to evaluate the relationship between the novel Counting Talk Test (CTT) for estimating upper and lower exercise intensity ranges and 1) heart rate reserve (HRR), 2) maximum heart rate (HRmax), and 3) Borg's Rating of Perceived Exertion (RPE).



Twenty individuals (12 F and 8 M), mean age 23.8 +/- 1.8 years, participated in two exercise tests. The first test consisted of subjects exercising on a treadmill from 40% of their predicted heart rate reserve (HRR) to maximum effort. HR, RPE and blood pressure (BP) were obtained at each stage. On the second test, subjects were instructed in the CTT method. At rest, subjects took a deep breath and counted out loud (one-one thousand, two-one thousand, etc.) at their usual talking speed. The highest count obtained, before taking a second breath, was recorded as the resting CTT value. Subjects were then tested on the treadmill from 40% of their actual HRR to maximum effort. HR, BP, RPE and CTT scores were obtained at each workload. The % of resting CTT (%CTT) was calculated for each workload. Pearson correlations were performed to evaluate the relationships.



Moderate to strong correlations were found between the %CTT value and %HRR (r = -0.81, P <.001), %HRmax (r = -0.78, P <.001), and RPE (r = -0.71, P <.001). Exercising at 30-50% of the resting CTT value corresponded to ACSM=s exercise guidelines for moderate to vigorous exercise intensity (40-85% HRR, 60-90% HRmax and RPE of 10-17).



The CTT method compares favorably to the standard field measures used to establish exercise intensity ranges in the moderate to vigorous activity level.