Hypoxia and exercise each exhibit opposing effects on executive function, and the mechanisms for this are not entirely clear. This study examined the influence of cerebral oxygenation and perfusion on executive function during exercise and recovery in normobaric hypoxia (NH) and normoxia (N). METHODS: There were 18 subjects who completed cycling trials in NH (12.5% FIo2) and N (20.93% FIo2). Right prefrontal cortex (PFC) oxyhemoglobin (O2Hb) and middle cerebral artery blood velocity (MCAbv) were collected during executive function challenges [mathematical processing and running memory continuous performance task (RMCPT)] at baseline, following 30 min of acclimation, during 20 min of cycling (60% V˙ o2max), and at 1, 15, 30, and 45 min following exercise. RESULTS: Results indicated effects of time for Math, RMCPT, and O2Hb; but not for MCAbv. Results also indicated effects of condition for O2Hb. Math scores were improved by 8.0% during exercise and remained elevated at 30 min of recovery (12.5%), RMCPT scores significantly improved at all time points (7.5-11.9%), and O2Hb increased by 662.2% and 440.9% during exercise in N and NH, respectively, and remained elevated through 15 min of recovery in both conditions. DISCUSSION: These results support the influence of PFC oxygenation and perfusion on executive function during exercise and recovery in N and NH.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Medicine (miscellaneous)
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health