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Title:Cardiovascular Fitness of Horses Conditioned by Treadmill Work
Author(s):Rodiek, Anne Virginia
Department / Program:Animal Science
Discipline:Animal Science
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):Agriculture, Animal Culture and Nutrition
Abstract:Nine mature Quarter Horse mares were used in a three part study to examine the effects of submaximal treadmill conditioning on the cardiovascular response to a standard exercise test (SET). Parameters measured included heart rate, cardiac output, stroke volume, packed cell volume, lactic and pyruvic acid concentrations, blood gases and blood pH. In all three experiments, the SET consisted of a rest period and warm-up walk followed by a period of trotting (11.4 to 12.1 kph) and a six minute standing recovery period on the treadmill. Parameters were measured at rest and at the end of both the trot and recovery periods. In the first experiment, previously unconditioned horses performed a SET before and after a four week conditioning program of increasing work time on a flat (0% grade) treadmill. In the second experiment, the same SET was performed on a flat treadmill and then on an 11% grade. In the third experiment, four horses were conditioned for 10 weeks of increasing periods of continuous trotting on a 3% grade while five horses were conditioned by intermittent periods of work and rest on a steeper grade (9%).
Results from all three experiments indicated that treadmill grade had a large effect on the cardiovascular and metabolic responses to work. Heart rates and lactic acid concentrations were more than two and three times higher, respectively, during the trot on the 11% grade than on the flat treadmill. The other parameters also changed in response to treadmill grade. The primary effect of submaximal conditioning was a marked improvement in oxygen utilization in the working muscle cells as evidenced by significant (p < .05) decreases in lactic acid concentrations during exercise and recovery after conditioning. Heart rates were significantly (p < .05) lower during exercise and recovery after conditioning. Trends toward resting bradycardia were also observed. Cardiac output and stroke volume tended to decrease with conditioning but changes were not significant. Conditioning effects became less apparent as the horses increased in fitness. There were no significant differences in measured parameters between horses conditioned by continuous (3% grade) or intermittent (9% grade) work.
Issue Date:1984
Description:215 p.
Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 1984.
Other Identifier(s):(UMI)AAI8409826
Date Available in IDEALS:2014-12-15
Date Deposited:1984

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