Field tests for evaluating the aerobic work capacity of firefighters
2013 (English)In: PLoS ONE, ISSN 1932-6203, Vol. 8, no 7, e68047- p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Working as a firefighter is physically strenuous, and a high level of physical fitness increases a firefighter's ability to cope with the physical stress of their profession. Direct measurements of aerobic capacity, however, are often complicated, time consuming, and expensive. The first aim of the present study was to evaluate the correlations between direct (laboratory) and indirect (field) aerobic capacity tests with common and physically demanding firefighting tasks. The second aim was to give recommendations as to which field tests may be the most useful for evaluating firefighters' aerobic work capacity. A total of 38 subjects (26 men and 12 women) were included. Two aerobic capacity tests, six field tests, and seven firefighting tasks were performed. Lactate threshold and onset of blood lactate accumulation were found to be correlated to the performance of one work task (rs = -0.65 and -0.63, p<0.01, respectively). Absolute (mL·min(-1)) and relative (mL·kg(-1)·min(-1)) maximal aerobic capacity was correlated to all but one of the work tasks (rs = -0.79 to 0.55 and -0.74 to 0.47, p<0.01, respectively). Aerobic capacity is important for firefighters' work performance, and we have concluded that the time to row 500 m, the time to run 3000 m relative to body weight (s·kg(-1)), and the percent of maximal heart rate achieved during treadmill walking are the most valid field tests for evaluating a firefighter's aerobic work capacity.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Public Library of Science , 2013. Vol. 8, no 7, e68047- p.
contained breathing apparatus; maximal oxygen-uptake; physiological demands; fire-fighters; physical demands; ability test; performance; responses; exercise; tasks
Sport and Fitness Sciences
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-79206DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0068047ISI: 000321341000133PubMedID: 23844153OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-79206DiVA: diva2:640258