Ross Villarino


Biology Abstract



The Effect Exercise has on Blood Pressure


Why some people are more likely to handle aerobic exercise better than others? It is possible the answer is given by the kind of muscles and blood pressure in every individual. Skeletal muscles can be classified in slow twitch muscles and fast twitch muscles. Slow twitch muscles use oxidative respiration which is more efficient converting oxygen in to ATP, yielding more energy and is slower than normal pace. Fast twitch muscles use glycolysis in which it is faster but does not provide much energy. In this experiment we wanted to know if jogging (slow twitch muscles) causes blood pressure to rise more than when sprinting (fast twitch muscles). We hypothesized that jogging would increase blood pressure more than when sprinting. The reason for this is that we believe that extended exercise (jogging) will make blood pressure rise more than short-term exercise (sprinting).

We split up the data into systolic and diastolic blood pressure. Systolic blood pressure is the highest pressure within the bloodstream which occurs during each heart beat. Diastolic blood pressure is the lowest pressure within the bloodstream in which occurs during each heart beat.

            We test our hypothesis by measuring the blood pressure on individuals before and after doing exercise. We measured the resting blood pressure for each subject before beginning the exercise. In each trial we had two subjects and a third person measured the blood pressure. Three trials for each person were performed with an interval of two minutes of resting time between each trial. Each subject had two tests, first the subject had to run an extended jog down the hallway, after we took their blood pressure. After that the subject had to sprint a quarter of the hallway, then took their blood pressure again.

            The results of our experiment indicated that blood pressure was higher during extended exercise (Average: Systolic- 166, Diastolic- 98) than shorter exercise (Average: Systolic- 145, Diastolic- 89). To find out if there was a significant difference between the two types of exercise a T test was performed, for the systolic and diastolic pressure. The P-value for diastolic blood pressure was 0.01296, and the P-value for the systolic blood pressure was 0.0439. Since both of these values are less than 0.05, this means that the difference in blood pressure from jogging versus sprinting is significant.

            Our results are consistent with our predictions based on our hypothesis. In our hypothesis we thought that blood pressure levels would be higher during extended exercise than short quick exercise, which proved to be true. One of our potential problems was that we didnŐt rest enough in between trials, which would make our blood pressure rise more than usual. Another problem could have been that we didnŐt test enough subjects or ran enough exercises to get our data as accurate as we could. One of the last problems we could have encountered was slight inaccuracy while taking the blood pressure of each subject.