Energy system interaction and relative contribution during maximal exercise

Gastin, Paul 2001, Energy system interaction and relative contribution during maximal exercise, Sports medicine, vol. 31, no. 10, pp. 725-741.

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Title Energy system interaction and relative contribution during maximal exercise
Author(s) Gastin, Paul
Journal name Sports medicine
Volume number 31
Issue number 10
Start page 725
End page 741
Publisher ADIS Press Ltd.
Place of publication Auckland, N.Z.
Publication date 2001
ISSN 0112-1642
1179-2035
Keyword(s) aerobic exercise, ,
anaerobic exercise
energy expenditure
Summary There are 3 distinct yet closely integrated processes that operate together to satisfy the energy requirements of muscle. The anaerobic energy system is divided into alactic and lactic components, referring to the processes  involved in the splitting of the stored phosphagens, ATP and  phosphocreatine (PCr), and the nonaerobic breakdown of carbohydrate to lactic acid through glycolysis. The aerobic energy system refers to the combustion of carbohydrates and fats in the presence of oxygen. The anaerobic pathways are capable of regenerating ATP at high rates yet are limited by the amount of energy that can be released in a single bout of intense exercise. In contrast, the aerobic system has an enormous capacity yet is somewhat hampered in its ability to delivery energy quickly. The focus of this review is on the interaction and relative contribution of the energy systems during single bouts of maximal exercise. A particular emphasis has been placed on the role of the aerobic energy system during high intensity exercise.

Attempts to depict the interaction and relative contribution of the energy systems during maximal exercise first appeared in the 1960s and 1970s. While insightful at the time, these representations were based on calculations of anaerobic energy release that now appear questionable. Given repeated reproduction over the years, these early attempts have lead to 2 common misconceptions in the exercise science and coaching professions. First, that the energy systems respond to the demands of intense exercise in an almost sequential manner, and secondly, that the aerobic system responds slowly to these energy demands, thereby playing little role in determining performance over short durations. More recent research suggests that energy is derived from each of the energy-producing pathways during almost all exercise activities. The duration of maximal exercise at which equal contributions are derived from the anaerobic and aerobic energy systems appears to occur between 1 to 2 minutes and most probably around 75 seconds, a time that is considerably earlier than has traditionally been suggested.
Language eng
Field of Research 110602 Exercise Physiology
HERDC Research category C1.1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
Copyright notice ©2001, Adis International Limited
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30004257

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