Thoracic Load Carriage & Inspiratory Muscle Training

Research Paper Title

Respiratory Effects of Thoracic Load Carriage Exercise and Inspiratory Muscle Training as a Strategy to Optimize Respiratory Muscle Performance with Load Carriage.

Abstract

Many occupational and recreational settings require the use of protective and/or load-bearing apparatuses worn over the thoracic cavity, known as thoracic load carriage (LC).

Compared to normal, unloaded exercise, thoracic LC exercise places an additional demand on the respiratory and limb locomotor systems by altering ventilatory mechanics as well as circulatory responses to exercise, thus accelerating the development of fatigue in the diaphragm and accessory respiratory muscles compared to unloaded exercise.

This may be a consequence of the unique demands of thoracic LC, which places an additional mass load on the thoracic cavity and can restrict chest wall expansion.

Therefore it is important to find effective strategies to ameliorate the detrimental effects of thoracic LC.

Inspiratory muscle training is an intervention that aims to increase the strength and endurance of the diaphragm and accessory inspiratory muscle and may therefore be a useful strategy to optimise performance with thoracic LC.

Reference

Shei, R.J., Chapman, R.F., Gruber, A.H. & Mickleborough, T.D. (2017) Respiratory Effects of Thoracic Load Carriage Exercise and Inspiratory Muscle Training as a Strategy to Optimize Respiratory Muscle Performance with Load Carriage. Springer Science Reviews. 5(1-2), pp.49-64. Epub 2017 Dec 12.

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