2009 Student Research Conference:
22nd Annual Student Research Conference

Effect of Altitude Habitation Upon Race Performance in High School Cross Country Runners
Sarah N. Schneider* and Kate T. Zimmerman
Dr. James A. Padfield, Faculty Mentor

The physiologic adaptation to living at increased altitude closely mimics the adaptations developed through endurance athletic training (e.g., increased plasma volume, increased blood hemoglobin, etc.). To investigate whether athletes who live at moderate altitude (about 5000 feet) have an advantage when traveling to lower altitudes to race, we identified runners who competed in the Foot Locker regional cross-country championship (near sea level) and compared their performance in this race against their state high school cross-country championship performance. Runners from Utah and New Mexico significantly (p<0.001) improved upon their state championship performance velocity (M/sec) when running at a lower altitude when these results were compared with California runners, who trained and raced at or near the same altitude in both their state championship and the Foot Locker regional.

Keywords: Altitude, Cross-Country Running, High School Athletics

Topic(s):Exercise Science

Presentation Type: Oral Paper

Session: 15-4
Location: VH 1000
Time: 9:00

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