Evaluation of intensity during an interval Spinning® session: a field study

Research paper by Maria Francesca Piacentini, Antonio Gianfelici, Marcello Faina, Francesco Figura, Laura Capranica

Indexed on: 15 Jul '09Published on: 15 Jul '09Published in: Sport Sciences for Health


The purpose of the present study was to evaluate metabolic and mechanical parameters of Spinning® and to verify if the intensities remain within the American College of Sports Medicine recommendations. Fifteen participants (8 males: 39.0±2.0 years; 70.0±2.0 kg; 177.0±2.0 cm, 58.0±3.0 ml/kg/min; and 7 females: 33.6±5.5 years; 56.6±4.4 kg; 165.0±4.6 cm; 48.8±5.5 ml/kg/min) performing an interval Spinning® session had their heart rate (HR), oxygen consumption (VO2) and power output (W) measured. At the beginning and during the Spinning® session, a blood sample was taken for lactate measurements. Statistical difference between phases was performed with ANOVA repeated measure design and a Chi-square test to calculate the frequency of distribution of HRs. The energy cost of the activity was 3367±159 kJ/h (804±38 kcal/h). Participants worked on average at 54% Wmax, 79% VO2max and 86% HRmax. Participants spent 80% of the session above the HR suggested by the instructor. Peak lactate measured was 5.3±0.69 mmol/l. The registered intensity was higher than the guidelines for healthy activities. Therefore Spinning® should be considered a “very intense” activity and particular attention should be paid to novel or unfit participants because no feedback is provided during the session to control the intensity participants are working at.