120 days in confinement during the 4-month SIRIUS-19 isolation project: Effects of aerobic exercise on cardiorespiratory kinetics and cognitive functions

Fabian Steinberg*, Fabian Möller, Mathias Haeger, Uwe Hoffmann, Uwe Drescher, Elena Fomina, Natalia Didkovskaya, Jessica Koschate

*Korrespondierende*r Autor*in für diese Arbeit

Publikation: Beitrag in Buch/Bericht/KonferenzbandKonferenzbeitrag - Abstract in KonferenzbandForschungBegutachtung


INTRODUCTION: Cardiorespiratory and cognitive parameters are affected during short- and long-term space travel, affecting safety, fitness, and human performance. Therefore, exercise countermeasures are investigated in space analog conditions concerning their feasibility, time-efficiency, and overall beneficial physical and cognitive performance effects. To date, positive effects of both continuous (CON) and interval (INT) aerobic exercise have been reported for cardiorespiratory parameters. In addition, positive effects of physical exercise on cognitive performance have been suggested. During a confinement experiment, we expected (I) adverse effects on cognitive performance due to confinement and (II) improvements in physical fitness due to the countermeasure, especially from INT. METHODS: Six participants (34 ± 6 years, 3 females) spent 120 days in confinement, conducting eight weeks of CON (50% maximum velocity), followed by eight weeks of INT treadmill exercise (30-88% maximum velocity) in a crossover design. Cardiorespiratory fitness was assessed with an exercise test protocol, including pseudo-random work rate (WR) changes (PRBS), constant WR phases, and incremental increases in WR until peak capacity. Tests were performed before the start, five times during, and once after the termination of the confinement mission. Heart rate (HR) was measured beat-to-beat, and oxygen uptake (V?O2) was assessed breath-by-breath. Kinetics information was derived by applying time-series analysis on the PRBS. Cognitive performance was assessed as the executive function 'inhibitory control', with the Eriksen Flanker task, performed within the exercise test during REST, constant WR at 3, 6, and 9 km h-1, and during recovery. RESULTS: Significantly lower values for peak values of HR (p=0.025), V?O2 (p=0.012), and respiratory exchange ratio (RER) (p = 0.001) were found during confinement. Kinetics of both HR and V?O2 revealed a significant time effect (both p < 0.05). CON and INT exercise both seemed to speed HR kinetics during the mission with slightly better effects for INT. Inhibitory control was neither altered during rest, at constant WR, nor at recovery throughout before, during, and after 120 days of confinement. CONCLUSION: Positive effects of INT and CON treadmill exercise from laboratory studies could be confirmed for HR kinetics during confinement but not for V?O2 kinetics. Possibly, the lack of general physical activity during confinement was merely compensated by the applied exercise countermeasure. While the implementation of cognitive testing within our treadmill exercise test was successful, reaction times (RT) and accuracy (ACC) of the Eriksen Flanker task were not significantly altered. However, descriptively slower RTs were observed during confinement compared to PRE and POST and might be attributed to less external stimuli, a decline in participants' mood, or general confinement effects.
TitelBook of Abstracts : 26th Annual Congress of the European College of Sport Science, 8th-10th September 2021
Herausgeber*innenF. Dela, J. W. Helge, E. Müller, E. Tsolakidis
Herausgeber (Verlag)ECSS
ISBN (elektronisch)978-3-9818414-4-2
PublikationsstatusVeröffentlicht - 09.09.2021
VeranstaltungAnnual Congress of the European College of Sport Science: ECSS Virtual Congress - Online
Dauer: 08.09.202110.09.2021
Konferenznummer: 26