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Analysing visual pattern of skin temperature during submaximal and maximal exercises
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Aims of this study were to examine our hypotheses assuming that (a) skin temperature patterns would differ between submaximal exercise (SE) and graded maximal exercise test (GXT) and (b) thermal kinetics of Tskin occurring in SE and GXT might be similar in a homogenous cohort. Core temperature (Tcore) also observed in order to evaluate thermoregulatory responses to SE and GXT. Eleven moderately to well-trained male athletes were volunteered for the study (age: 22.2 ± 3.7 years; body mass: 73.8 ± 6.9 kg; height: 181 ± 6.3 cm; body surface area 1.93 ± 0.1 m2; body fat: 12.6% ± 4.2%; VÌ‡O2 max: 54 ± 9.9 mL min-1 kg-1). Under stabilized environmental conditions in climatic chamber, GXT to volitional exhaustion and 20-min SE at 60% of VO2 max were performed on cycle ergometer. Thermal analyses were conducted in 2-min intervals throughout exercise tests. Tskin was monitored by a thermal camera, while Tcore was recorded via an ingestible telemetric temperature sensor. Thermal kinetic analyses showed that Tskin gradually decreased till the 7.58 ± 1.03th minutes, and then initiated to increase till the end of SE (Rsqr = 0.97), while Tskin gradually decreased throughout the GXT (Rsqr = 0.89). Decrease in the level of Tskin during the GXT was significantly below from the SE [F (4, 40) = 2.67, p = 0.07, ηp 2 = 0.211]. In the meantime, Tcore continuously increased throughout the SE and GXT (p < 0.05). Both GXT and SE were terminated at very close final Tcore values (37.8 ± 0.3 °C and 38.0 ± 0.3 °C, respectively; p > 0.05). However, total heat energies were calculated as 261.5 kJ/m2 and 416 kJ/m2 for GXT and SE, respectively (p < 0.05). Thus, it seems that SE may be more advantageous than GXT in thermoregulation. In conclusion, Tcore gradually increased throughout maximal and submaximal exercises as expected. Tskin curves patterns found to be associated amongst participants at both GXT and SE. Therefore, Tskin kinetics may ensure an important data for monitoring thermoregulation in exercise.