Effect of chronic hypoxia and socioeconomic status on VO2 max and anaerobic power of bolivian boys
Van Praagh, Emmanuel
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Abstract. The aim of this work was to analyze the effects of altitude and socioeconomic and nutritional status on maximal oxygen uptake (Vo₂max) and anaerobic power (P) in 11-yr-old Bolivian boys. At both high (HA) (3,600 m) and low (LA) (420 m) altitudes, the boys were divided into high (HA₁, n = 23, LA₁, n = 23, LA₁, n = 48) and Iow (HA₂, n = 44,LA₂, n = 30) socioeconomic levels. Anthropometric characteristics, Vo₂max, and P [maximal P (Pmax) during a force-velocity test and mean P (P) during a 30-s Wingate test] were measured. Results showed that 1) anthropometric parameters were not different between HA₁ and LA₁ and HA₂, and LA₂ boys, but HA₂ and LA₂ boys were two years behind HA₁ and LA₁ boys in development; 2) Vo₂max was not different in boys from the same altitude, but at HA Vo₂max was 10% Iower than at LA (HA₁ = 37.2 + - 5.6, HA₂ = 38.9 + - 6.4, LA₁ = 42.5 + 5.8, LA₂ = 42.5 + - 5.3 ml .min-1.kg-' body wt); and 3) Pmax and P were higher in well-nourished than in undernourished boys, but there was no difference in Pmax and P between HA₁ and LA₁ and HA₂ and LA₂ boys (HA₁ = 6.8 + - 1.0, HA₂ = 5.5 + - 0.8, LA₁ = 7.1 + - 1.0, LA₂ = 5.3 + - 0.9 W/kg for Pmax; HA₁ = 5 .2 + - 0.8, HA₂ = 4.5 + - 0.9, LA₁ = 5.2 + - 0.7, LA₂ = 4.0 + - 0.6 W/kg for P). A marginal state of malnutrition had no effect on Vo₂max but led to lower P in prepubertal children at HA as well as at LA.