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Derek Ferley

Document Type

Dissertation - University Access Only

Award Date


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Department / School

Health and Nutritional Sciences

First Advisor

Matthew Vukovich


Despite a lack of evidence as to its physiological efficacy, uphill running represents a frequently prescribed and often used form of high-intensity interval training in the development of competitive distance runners. In contrast, several biomechanical studies suggest uphill vs. level-grade running results in greater electromyographical (EMG) activity in lower body musculature, increased kinetic output at the ankle, knee and hip joints, and represents a sport-specific form of training, and indicate a purported mechanism(s) of action for improving running performance similar to other high-intensity resistance-to-movement training tactics such as explosive strength training, heavy strength training, and plyometric training. Recent investigations suggest these types of training methods improve distance running performance not by improving maximum oxygen consumption (VO2max) or the lactate threshold but instead by enhancing muscular and neuromuscular characteristics, also known as muscle power factors. The following chapters of this dissertation add to the growing body of literature showcasing the effects of high-intensity training on endurance performance, and sheds light on the efficacy of using uphill running as a training tactic for improving distance running performance. Chapter 3, The Effects of Uphill vs. Level-Grade High-Intensity Interval Training on VO2max, VMax, VLT and TMax in Well- Trained Distance Runners, addresses two key physiological determinants associated with distance running performance—VO2max and velocity at lactate threshold (VLT); while Chapter 4, The Effects of Uphill and Level-Grade High-Intensity Interval Training on Running Economy and Muscle Power in Well-Trained Distance Runners, addresses a third key physiological determinant, running economy (RE).

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Long-distance running -- Physiological aspects
Running -- Training


Includes bibliographical references



Number of Pages



South Dakota State University


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