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The effects of body mass index on heart rate recovery

The effects of body mass index on heart rate recovery

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Published by Stephen Autar
A study looking at any correlation between body mass index and heart rate recovery.
A study looking at any correlation between body mass index and heart rate recovery.

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Published by: Stephen Autar on Mar 06, 2012
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01/16/2013

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The effects of body mass index on heart rate recoveryStephen Autar Science PBATSusan KangSpring 2011
 
Autar 2AbstractThe purpose of this experiment was to investigate the correlation between body massindex (BMI) and heart rate recovery, if any such link exists. To investigate this, I found theheight and weight of test subjects who were within my age range, to check their BMI values, andthen the subjects ran for two and a half minutes. Directly upon the cessation of activity, thesubjects were to check their heart rate and then again two minutes later, and, to calculate their heart rate recovery values, the first values were subtracted from the second. It was found that, onaverage, the subjects within the overweight BMI range had the highest heart rate recovery time,compared to underweight, average weight, and obese subjects on average. The overweightsubjects averaged a 4% and 8% lead over the average and obese subject groups, respectively.With such small differences and significant errors in the experimental design, no conclusiveconclusion can be drawn from the evidence compiled from this experiment. It is recommendedfor further experiments conducted on this issue to test a wider selection of subjects, so as to provide for more concrete and accurate data.
 
Autar 3IntroductionThis experiment will investigate the effects of body mass index on heart rate recovery.Heart rate recovery is the measure of how quickly the heart can return to its resting rate, upon theend of activity or a workout (Callaway; Sandeen). The heart is one of the key organs in the body, and in the circulatory system (Dowshen, “Heart”).The responsibility of the circulatory system as a whole is to transport materialsthroughout the body; it delivers nutrients and oxygen (O
2
) to the countless cells in the body, andit also removes wastes, such as carbon dioxide (CO
2
), from the body. There are two circulatoryloops in the body: the pulmonary circulation, which is “a short loop from the heart to the lungsand back again” (Dowshen, “Heart”), and the systemic circulation, which sends blood from theheart throughout all the parts of the body and then back again to the heart. Both systems arecomprised of the heart, blood, and blood vessels.The heart is, as aforementioned, the focal part of the system. Located slightly left of themiddle of the chest, it is a muscular, hollow, pump which distributes blood throughout the body.The amount of blood pumped depends on the needs of the individual, as ascertained and theninstructed by the body. For example, when an individual is asleep, the heart “pumps just enoughto provide for the lower amounts of oxygen needed by [the body] at rest” (Dowshen, “Heart”).The organ is comprised of four thickly-walled chambers. The two top chambers are the left andright atria, and the two bottom chambers are the left and right ventricles. The ventricles areresponsible for the heart rate, which is measured by feeling a pulse. A pulse is “the rhythmicexpansion and contraction of an artery as blood is forced through it by the regular contractions of the heart” (“Heart Rate or Pulse”; “Definition of Heart Rate”), and can be used to measure howhard the heart is working.

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