Rate pressure product changes in concurrent weight bearing and mental tasks
Tasks performed by soldiers involve a lot of physical components that require weight bearing and lifting activities, and thus, stress physical system in the soldier. Historically, aerobic capacity or maximum metabolic energy expenditure (VO2max) has been used to establish acceptable levels of physical workload involving muscular exertions significant in magnitude and repetitiveness. Blood pressure and heart rate have been found to be a sensitive variable during mental tasks. The rationale has been that changes in metabolic energy expenditure (VO2) with physical workload will reflect metabolic needs of working muscles. The overall objective of the proposed work is to determine if Rate Pressure Product is a more sensitive measure than VO2max for concurrent weight bearing and mental activities in soldiers. Results from the research indicate that Rate Pressure Product max (RPP max) is a sensitive factor to changes in workloads during weight bearing activities, there was a significant difference between RPPpeak/RPP max ratios and VO2/VO2 max ratios(P< 0.001) and the magnitude of RPP differences during the stages was found to be higher than the magnitude of differences in VO2. Hence Rate Pressure Product (RPP), as a percentage of RPPmax, can be used to quantify workload design limits in tasks that have physical (weight bearing and lifting) components, rather than the current practice of using only maximum aerobic capacity (measured by maximum volumetric oxygen consumption VO2max) for work design limits and design of work rest allowances.
Gudipati, Srinivas, "Rate pressure product changes in concurrent weight bearing and mental tasks" (2006). ETD Collection for University of Texas, El Paso. AAI1430690.