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Title: Development of an upper body exercise machine to increase energy expenditure whilst reducing perceived exertion
Authors: Yang, Connie
Issue Date: 2006
Publisher: © Connie Yang
Abstract: Rising levels of obesity m the past decade have been primarily attributed to an increasing sedentary population. Whilst a large majority of adults report using physical activity to lose weight, many individuals have difficulty sustaining exercise. Particularly for those who are not able to exercise using their lower body (due to injury, cardiac impairment, neurological disorder, paraplegia, or amputation), there exist limited means for cardiovascular exercise Traditional upper body exercise occurs largely in the form of arm ergometry, which tends to quickly fatigue users by repeatedly activating a small muscle mass without allowing adequate time for recovery before reactivation Moreover, to perform exercise more effectively, increasing the energy expenditure rate for a given exertion level may be extremely beneficial. Thus the aim of this work is to develop a new upper body cardiovascular exercise machine that increases energy expenditure above that observed in current machines for a given rating of perceived exertion (RPE). Major determinants of energy expenditure and RPE were first identified and used to explain metabolic rate differences between cardiovascular exercise modes. Various factors such as exercising muscle mass, recruitment patterns, contraction velocity, and contraction type were found to significantly affect energy expenditure rate RPE was determined to be jointly influenced by both physiological and psychological factors. Physiological determinants were separated into two categories local factors relating to aches, cramps, pain, and fatigue in exercising muscles and central factors relating to oxygen uptake, respiratory rate, heart rate, and ventilatory rate during exercise A comprehensive table of upper body joint movements, associated muscle masses, ranges of movement, and peak torques was then created to better understand the various types of limb movements and characteristic properties associated with activated muscle The table was used to generate a range of new exercise sequences designed to increase muscle activation, range of motion, and to achieve a duty cycle whereby active phases for a specific muscle are followed by relaxation phases Since exercise machines traditionally used during testing have been limited to commercially available equipment, it has historically been difficult to study new types of exercise movements Thus in order to assess the energy expenditure rate associated with the new exercise sequences, an exercise test machine was constructed that allowed a wide range of single-arm movements to be performed with adjustable resistance in each axis of movement The exercise test machine was used to test four new single-arm exercises. Results indicated that these exercises produced similar or greater energy expenditure rates than those currently achieved in single-arm ergometry Using information gathered from experimentation and prior research, a new technology (Spirotrainer) was developed for upper body exercise. The Spirotrainer enables a unique four-loop movement pattern to be traced that aims to reduce upper body muscle fatigue by alternating the direction, and thus timing of muscle activation. Initial pilot tests have shown the viability of the Spirotrainer for cardiovascular arm exercise. Results have indicated a more even distribution of upper body muscle pam and fatigue during prolonged exercise than standard arm crank. Although initial physiological measurements such as heart rate and localised pain ratings were higher compared to arm crank at a given RPE, much of this may be due to the need for continued design optimisation before further testing occurs.
Description: A Doctoral Thesis. Submitted in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the award of Doctor of Philosophy of Loughborough University.
URI: https://dspace.lboro.ac.uk/2134/23082
Appears in Collections:PhD Theses (Mechanical, Electrical and Manufacturing Engineering)

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