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Validity of Polar FT80 training computer in a strength training study


The Department of Biology of Physical Activity in the University of Jyväskylä, and its Department of Sports Technology in Snowpolis Technology Park in Vuokatti, Finland, did conduct a strength training research in which the new Polar FT80 training computer was studied. The research was done during spring/summer 2008. The starting point to this study was that in traditional strength training you follow predetermined recovery periods from your watch between the training sets. The new Polar FT80 enables the determination of your recovery periods based on personalized training load and heart rate recovery. This new strength training concept determines, first time ever, when your body has recovered to an optimal level for the next training set.

There were 48 participants between the ages of 25–47 and with an active approach in physical exercise. Participants were randomly set in two groups. FT80 group (12 men and 12 women) used Polar FT80 training computer to measure recovery periods between the training sets. Control group (12 men and 12 women) followed traditional predetermined recovery periods between the training sets. Both groups had similar strength training program which loaded all muscle groups three times a week for seven weeks.

The training time of Polar FT80 users was nearly half (35 minutes) the training time of the control group (56 min). Despite the shorter training time, maximum strength improved with FT80 groups’ men by 15 percent more than with the men following traditional recovery period. Also the testosterone level did rise notably more in FT80 group than in the control group. However, this particular training did not affect maximal oxygen uptake.

The research proved that personalized recovery period enhances the efficiency of strength training and spares the time used in training.

Study result will be published and presented in international scientific journals and meetings during 2009.

For more information, contact:
Dr. Raija Laukkanen, FACSM
Director, Exercise Science
Polar Electro Ltd

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