The purpose of this study was to assess maximal aerobic power (VO2max) in trained and untrained 15-year-old boys. The trained subjects (18) were junior swimmers from a Belgrade swimming team, and the untrained ones (12) were from a Belgrade high school. VO2max was directly measured during progressive cycle ergometer exercise using open circuit spirometry. No significant differences in height, mass, percentage fat and vital capacity were noted between the trained and untrained groups. Maximal aerobic power (overall, relative and in relation to lean body mass) in absolute values, and expressed per kilogram of body mass and lean body mass, was 31.5%, 21.2% and 20.6%, respectively, higher in the trained than in the untrained group (P less than 0.05). These data suggest that physical training significantly increases maximal aerobic power in young subjects.
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