Effects of Respiratory Muscle Training (RMT) on Ventilatory Parameters and Respiratory Muscle Strength (RMS) in Different Postures of the Rowing Stroke in Elite Rowers of Sri Lanka
Keywords:Posture; Respiratory muscle training; Rowing; Ventilatory functions.
Background: Rowing places ‘extreme’ demands on ventilation due to the cramped body posture during the rowing stroke. The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of a 12-week respiratory muscle training (RMT) program on ventilatory parameters and respiratory muscle strength (RMS) in different postures of the rowing stroke in professional male rowers in Sri Lanka. Methods: Twenty national male rowers, aged 20-35 years were grouped randomly into an experimental (n=11) and a control (n=9) group. Prior to the study, baseline measurements of ventilatory functions (spirometry) and RMS were assessed by a portable spirometer and hand held mouth pressure meter respectively. Subsequently, rowers in the experimental group were prescribed a RMT program comprising of breathing and abdominal exercises while control group was prescribed a general exercise program for 12 weeks after which all the above parameters were assessed again.
Conclusion: Ventilatory functions and RMS were not statistically significant amongst the different rowing postures (p>0.05). Ventilatory functions were observed to be significantly higher in the experimental group than the control group following the respective training programs (p<0.05). The novel RMT program had a beneficial effect in improving the ventilatory functions in the experimental group in the different postures of the rowing stroke.