Electrocardiographic changes following six months of long-distance triathlon training in previously recreationally active individuals

Dawkins, Tony, Shave, Rob E., Baggish, Aaron L., Drane, Aimee L., Parisi, Erika J., Roberts, Michael G. and Roberts, Justin D. (2020) Electrocardiographic changes following six months of long-distance triathlon training in previously recreationally active individuals. European Journal of Sport Science, 20 (4). pp. 553-562. ISSN 1536-7290

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Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/17461391.2019.1641556


Background: Clinical electrocardiographic (ECG) guidelines for athlete’s heart are based upon cross-sectional data. We aimed to longitudinally evaluate the influence of endurance training on the ECG and compare the prevalence of ECG abnormalities defined by contemporary criteria. Methods: A group of 66 training-naïve individuals completed a six-month training programme with resting ECGs and cardiopulmonary exercise tests performed at baseline, two and six months. Data were analysed using repeated measures analysis of variance and the prevalence of ECG abnormalities compared between proposed criteria. Results: Maximal oxygen consumption increased from 45.4 ± 7.1 to 50.3 ± 7.1 ml·kg−1·min−1 (p < 0.05) pre-to-post training. ECG changes included, bradycardia (60 ± 12 vs. 53 ± 8 beats·min−1; p < 0.05), shorter P wave duration (106 ± 10 vs. 103 ± 11 ms; p < 0.05), reduced QTc (413 ± 27 vs. 405 ± 22 ms; p < 0.05), and increased left ventricular Sokolow-Lyon index (2.45 ± 0.66 vs. 2.62 ± 0.78 mV; p < 0.05). 85% of individuals showed ≥1 ‘training-related’ ECG finding at six months vs. 68% at baseline. Using the 2013 Seattle Criteria, 4 ECGs were ‘abnormal’ at baseline and 3 at month six vs. 2 at baseline and 1 at month six, using the 2017 International Consensus. Prevalence of ‘borderline’ findings did not increase with training (11% at baseline and six months). Conclusion: Six-months endurance training leads to a greater prevalence of ‘training-related’ but not ‘borderline’ or ‘training-unrelated’ ECGs. ‘Borderline findings’ may not necessarily represent training-related cardiac remodelling in novice athletes following a six-month training intervention.

Item Type: Journal Article
Keywords: Electrocardiography, endurance, exercise, athlete’s heart
Faculty: Faculty of Science & Engineering
SWORD Depositor: Symplectic User
Depositing User: Symplectic User
Date Deposited: 02 Sep 2019 15:15
Last Modified: 31 Jan 2022 14:31
URI: https://arro.anglia.ac.uk/id/eprint/704697

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