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The effects of low-volume high-intensity interval training and circuit training on maximal oxygen uptake

Birkett, Stefan T.; Nichols, Simon; Sawrey, Richard; Gleadall-Siddall, Damien; McGregor, Gordon; Ingle, Lee


Stefan T. Birkett

Simon Nichols

Richard Sawrey

Damien Gleadall-Siddall

Gordon McGregor


High-intensity interval training (HIIT) and circuit training (CT) are popular methods of exercise, eliciting improvements in cardiorespiratory fitness (CRF). However, direct comparisons of these two training methods are limited. We investigated the effects of HIIT and CT on CRF.

Thirty-nine apparently healthy middle-aged participants [HIIT; mean age: 42.5 ± 12.3; V˙O2max 31.5 ± 7.1 (ml kg−1 min−1); 52% males; CT; mean age: 41.2 ± 12.9; V˙O2max 31.4 ± 6.8 (ml kg−1 min−1); 57% males] were randomly allocated to two sessions per week of HIIT or CT over 8 weeks. HIIT performed ten 1-min cycle-ergometry intervals at > 85% HRmax, separated by ten 1-min intervals of active recovery. The CT group performed up to 40-min of CT at 60–80% HRmax. CRF was measured using maximum oxygen uptake ( V˙O2max ), ventilatory anaerobic threshold ( V˙O2 at VAT) and maximum oxygen pulse ( V˙O2 /HR).

Journal Article Type Article
Publication Date 2019-08
Journal Sport Sciences for Health
Print ISSN 1824-7490
Electronic ISSN 1825-1234
Publisher Springer (part of Springer Nature)
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 15
Issue 2
Pages 443–451
APA6 Citation Birkett, S. T., Nichols, S., Sawrey, R., Gleadall-Siddall, D., McGregor, G., & Ingle, L. (2019). The effects of low-volume high-intensity interval training and circuit training on maximal oxygen uptake. Sport Sciences for Health, 15(2), 443–451.
Keywords Cardiorespiratory fitness; Fidelity; Maximal oxygen consumption; V̇O2max; Ventilatory anaerobic threshold; HIIT
Publisher URL
Additional Information This is the accepted manuscript of an article published in Sport sciences for health, 2019. The version of record is available at the DOI link in this record.


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Copyright Statement
© The Author(s) 2019
Open Access
This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made.

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