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*AEROBIC CAPACITY (METS) &
**AEROBIC FITNESS ASSESSMENT

*WHAT IS METS (Metabolic Equivalents) &
**HOW IS IT DETERMINED AND USED?

A MET is a multiple of resting oxygen
consumption. One MET equals a person's
oxygen uptake at rest which is equal to
approximately 3.5 ml. of oxygen per
kg. of body weight per minute (3.5 ml/kg/min).

Physicians often prescribe exercise by MET
values for patients in cardiac rehab programs and continually reevaluate the MET capacity as
rehabilitation progresses. Intensity of exercise may be determined as a percentage of METS (functional capacity.)  Activities are chosen,
based on that percentage, that are known to
require energy expenditures at a specified level.

EX: A physician refers a client to PRESCRIPTION HEALTH with a functional capacity of 10 METS.  Based on the client's specific health condition, I determine the percentage of functional capacity to begin aerobic conditioning.  I determine that the client should be started at 50% of functional capacity.  The METS are multiplied by the percentage (10 METS x .50) = 5 METS.  This is the MET level where I will begin the client's training and I choose activities from a list that have known MET values.  Walking has a known MET value of 4-7.  For those client's who are trying to lose or maintain weight through calorie expenditure, a MET table allows me to figure out, based on a client's body weight, exactly how many calories are burned during aerobic training.

METS are primarily used and determined by physician's and are only necessary for populations who have known medical conditions requiring physician assisted aerobic testing.

At PRESCRIPTION HEALTH I determine aerobic capacity for those who are healthy and those who have not undergone a physician's assisted treadmill test. PLEASE NOTE: IF THERE IS A KNOWN MEDICAL CONDITION, I WILL NOT TEST WITHOUT PRIOR APPROVAL FROM A PHYSICIAN.

The tests I use to determine aerobic capacity are: 


ROSS SUBMAXIMAL TREADMILL TEST
YMCA SUBMAXIMAL STEP TEST
6 MINUTE WALK TEST


I record the results from the test and determine fitness levels based on norms provided by the ACE Personal Trainer Manual. Then I figure training HR by age predicted maximal heart rate and multiply it by the percent of intensity I recommend based on fitness level (50-90%).

RESOURCE: American Council on Exercise  Personal Training Manual, 1996

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