The effects of three exercise intensities on the alpha brain wave activity of adult males
Daugherty, Paul L.
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This study examined alpha brain wave density changes in 10 aerobically trained males and 10 nontrained males who performed bicycle ergometry at maximal (MX), 50% of maximal (Sub50), and 65% of maximal (sub65) exercise intensities. The purposes of this study were to determine whether (a) alpha brain wave activity occurs in trained and untrained subjects under low, medium, and high exercise intensities; (b) the onset of alpha activity is dependent on the duration of exercise; (c) the onset of alpha activity is dependent upon the intensity of the exercise; and (d) exercise intensities employed for cardiovascular training result in increased alpha activity. MX was performed until volitional fatigue, utilizing incremental loading at a pedal rate of 75 rpm. Sub50 and sub65 exercise intensities were performed at 75 rpm until caloric expenditure equaled approximately that which was attained during the MX test. A 2 x 3 x 7 MANOVA with repeated measures, followed by Tukey's post hoc analysis, indicated a significant overall difference (p < .01) in alpha densities between MX exercise intensity (X = 81.34) and sub50 (X = 48.44) and sub65 (X = 52.64) exercise intensities. The onset of exercise resulted in statistically significant increases (p < .05) in alpha densities in the MX and Sub65 exercise intensities only. Exercise onset at sub50 increased alpha density, but this increase was not statistically significant. Alpha densities increased continually during MX until volitional fatigue. During sub50 and sub65, alpha densities did not differ significantly during exercise. Alpha densities at 5 minutes postexercise were nonsignificantly different from preexercise alpha densities. There were no statistically significant differences in the alpha density responses of the trained and untrained subjects for any of the exercise tests. It was concluded that (a) exercise intensity is the primary factor influencing the increase in alpha densities during exercise, (b) exercise intensities above 50% of maximal workload will elicit an increase in alpha density, (c) training state does not affect the ability to produce increased alpha densities with exercise, and (d) at 5-min postexercise, alpha densities do not differ from preexercise levels.