Sprint interval training VS. High intensity interval training in untrained University students
Sprint interval training (SIT) involves repeated bouts of high-intensity training (‘allout’ activity of 10-30 seconds) with successive periods of low-intensity activity or rest. High-intensity interval training (HIIT) also involves high-intensity training (90% of VO2 max), usually one to four minutes, interspersed with recovery intervals of low-intensity activity or rest. The study aimed to compare directly various physiological and performance parameters of SIT and HIIT with a non-exercise control group amongst untrained university students. Sixty-three untrained (37 men and 26 women) participants (22±1.7yrs) volunteered for the study and were randomly allocated to SIT, HIIT and control group. Maximal oxygen uptake, the YoYo intermittent recovery test (YYIRT), 20-metre speed, agility T-test, vertical jump and Wingate-test was assessed before and after 7-weeks of training. Both interval groups improved significantly compared to the control group for VO2 max, peak treadmill speed, YYIRT and 20-metre speed (p<0.05) with no significant differences between SIT and HIIT (effect sizes within groups ranging from small to large). Regarding power output associated with the Wingate test, significant improvements compared to the control were realised for SIT only (p<0.05). Both methods of IT are feasible to improve exercise capacity in untrained university students.
Keywords: Sprint interval training; High-intensity interval training; Aerobic; Anaerobic; Untrained.