Date of Graduation

Fall 2015

Document Type

Honors Research Project

Degree Name

Bachelor of Science


Exercise Science - PrePhysical Therapy

Research Sponsor

Ronald Otterstetter, Ph.D.

First Reader

Stacey Buser, M.S., ATC

Second Reader

Rachele Kappler, M.S., CES


The purpose of this study was to investigate how high intensity interval training (HIIT) performed on a land treadmill (LT) versus HIIT on an underwater aquatic treadmill (AT) would affect aerobic and anaerobic performance. The HIIT program consisted of running 8 intervals beginning with a 20 second workout and increasing exercise 5 seconds each interval until 55 seconds was reached. Ten seconds rest between each interval was protocol for a total interval running time of 5 minutes. The frequency of this training program was 3 times/week for 6 weeks. Nineteen college aged subjects were recruited, 13 subjects completed the program including pre and post-testing which consisted of maximal oxygen consumption tests (VO2max) and Wingate anaerobic tests (mean power and peak power). The subjects were randomly placed into an aquatic treadmill group (ATG, n=6) or land treadmill group (LTG, n=7). The VO2max tests were conducted on an AT for the ATG subjects and a LT for LTG subjects. The exercise intensity for the training program intervals was calculated off the greatest treadmill velocity and grade/jet resistance that the subject achieved during the VO2max test. The test results showed that the LTG and ATG both increased their VO2max, mean power, and peak power. The LTG showed a higher increase in VO2max, where as the ATG showed greater increases in mean and peak power. In conclusion, an increasing interval HIIT program performed 3 times/wk for 6 weeks may produce similar improvements in aerobic (VO2max) and anaerobic (mean power and peak power) performance on an aquatic treadmill as a land treadmill.