Comparison of Cross-Modal OMNI Scale of Perceived Exertion at Ventilatory Breakpoint and Self-Regulated Exercises in Male Adolescents in Singapore

Project Number
RS 7/14 GB

Project Duration
October 2014 - August 2018


Exercise and physical activity are important elements in maintaining fitness and health. The Singapore Health Promotion Board recommends 150 minutes of physical activity per week for the general population for a healthy lifestyle (Singapore Health Promotion Board, 2011). Similarly, the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) recommends "that most adults engage in moderate-intensity cardiorespiratory exercise training for 30 minutes or more a day on five or more days a week (for a total of 150 minutes per week), vigorous-intensity cardiorespiratory exercise training for 20 minutes or more a day, on 3 or more days a week (amounting to 75 minutes or more a week), or a combination of moderate- and vigorous-intensity exercise to achieve a total energy expenditure of >500-1000 MET.minute.week." in order to "improve and maintain physical fitness and health" (Garber et al., 2011). For children and adolescents aged 6-17 years, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services recommended at least one hour of physical activity every day, which should include moderate- and vigorous-intensity aerobic activities and muscle-strengthening and bone-strengthening activities (Oja, Bull, Fogelholm, and Martin, 2010). The prescription and regulation of aerobic exercise intensity using conventional procedures such as target training heart rate (HR) range and oxygen uptake (VO2) is common, especially for the adult population. Targeting training heart rate range may be easy for adults but may prove problematic for children and adolescents. This is mainly due to the fact that children and adolescents may not be able to accurately monitor their HR. Firstly, because children and adolescents at different developmental stages may find it difficult to determine their target HR to train at and secondly, they may not be able to accurately measure their own heart rates without using a heart rate monitor. This is because detecting palpitation via carotid and radial pulse may be difficult for children. Moreover, HR can be affected by factors such as ambient air temperature, humidity, clinical status and even factors such as psychological stress or even the food consumed by the individual, such as caffeine or medications. Assessing oxygen consumption is also a complex process for both adults and children since it involves laborious laboratory procedures. Most of these methods are either too costly or too cumbersome to apply. Hence, an affordable and easy method of exercise prescription would be particularly beneficial.

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