Handgrip contribution to lactate production and leg power during high-intensity exercise

Julien Baker, Edward Brown, Gary Hill, Glen Phillips, Russell Williams, Bruce Davies

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33 Citations (Scopus)



The purpose of this study was to examine the upper-body contribution via handgrip to power profiles and blood lactate concentrations during high-intensity cycle ergometry.


Nine trained male subjects each completed a 20-s high-intensity cycle ergometer test twice, in a random manner, using two protocols, with a handgrip (WG), and without handgrip (WOHG). Capillary (earlobe) blood samples were obtained pre- and post-exercise. Blood samples were corrected for plasma volume changes and analyzed to determine blood lactate concentrations.


In the WG protocol, mean (±SEM) blood lactate concentrations sampled over the three conditions were 0.98 ± 0.33 mmol·L−1, 5.68 ± 0.46 mmol·L−1, and 9.14 ± 0.38 mmol·L−1, respectively. During the WOHG protocol, blood lactate values recorded were 0.99 ± 0.26 mmol·L−1, 5.58 ± 0.58 mmol·L−1, and 7.62 ± 0.65 mmol·L−1, respectively. Differences were found (P < 0.05) from rest to 4 min after exercise for both groups. Differences in concentrations were also observed between groups at the 4-min postexercise blood-sampling stage. Peak power output values recorded using the WG protocol were also greater (1461 ± 94 W vs 1136 ± 88 W;P < 0.05). No differences were recorded for mean power output (MPO), fatigue index (FI), or work done (WD).


Results indicate significant differences in power output and blood lactate concentrations between protocols. These findings suggest that the performance of traditional style leg-cycle ergometry requires a muscular contribution from the whole body. As such, researchers should consider this, both in terms of the allocation of ergometer loads, and in the analysis of blood-borne metabolites.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1037-1040
Number of pages4
JournalMedicine & Science in Sports & Exercise
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2002
Externally publishedYes


  • Wingate test
  • cycle ergometry


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