Upper body contribution during leg cycling peak power in teenage boys and girls

A. Jammes, E. Dor, J. Baker, M. Graham, K. New, E. Van Praagh

Research output: Contribution to journalMeeting Abstract


Peak power of lower limbs is commonly assessed by leg cycling exercise. Recent work (Dor, 2000; Baker, 2001) suggested to standardise cycling peak power for fat-free mass (FFM). Furthermore, in adults, using electromyography it was shown that during high intensity cycle ergometry there was an important upper body muscle contribution. The latter suggests that during leg cycling, the energy expended by the upper body muscles is not negligible. The purpose of this study was to examine the upper body contribution during high intensity leg cycle ergometry in young people.

Ten girls and thirteen boys (mean age 16.7 years) performed a Force-Velocity test and a twenty seconds Wingate test, using two protocols, with handgrip (WG) and without handgrip (WOHG). Anthropometric measurements were recorded for each subject.

The WG protocol indicate significantly higher peak mechanical power than the WOHG protocol for boys (1304¡Á176 W and 1025¡Á135 W, respectively P < 0,001) but not for girls (699¡A134 W and 625¡Á143 W, respectively NS). Boys demonstrated significantly (P > < 0,001) higher handgrip strength (460 N) compared with girls (276 N). Handgrip strength was correlated with P (difference of power between the two protocols) for boys (r = 0.576) and girls (r = 0.685). Results indicate significant linear relationships between lean body mass and with both WHOG and WG protocols (r = 0,873; r = 0,887 respectively).

Results indicate no significant differences in peak mechanical power between protocols for girls, suggesting that the upper limbs contribution during leg cycling peak power is higher for boys than for girls.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)S24-S24
Number of pages1
JournalMedicine & Science in Sports & Exercise
Issue numberSupplement 5
Publication statusPublished - May 2003
Externally publishedYes


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