Gender differences in energy expenditure during walking with backpack and double-pack loads

Siu Wai LI, Otto H. T. CHAN, T. Y. NG, L. H. KAM, C. Y. NG, W. C. CHUNG, Hung Kay Daniel CHOW

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Objective: To investigate gender differences in energy expenditure during walking with backpack and double-pack loads.
Background: Studies have reported that energy expenditure during walking with double-pack loads is lower compared with backpack carriage. However, the effect of gender on energy expenditure while walking with these two load distribution systems has not been investigated.
Method: Thirty healthy young adults (15 female and 15 male participants) walked on a treadmill with backpack and double-pack loads weighing 30% of their body weight at a speed of 0.89 m/s for 10 min. The energy expenditure in terms of oxygen consumption (VO₂) and respiratory exchange ratio (RER) were continuously monitored using a portable gas analyzer throughout each walking exercise. A mixed-design analysis of variance model was adopted to test the effects of gender, pack, and time on VO₂ and RER.
Results: No time effect was observed on VO₂. However, significant gender, pack, and interaction effects were observed. The lowest VO₂ was found in female participants under double-pack carriage. No significant gender or pack differences existed in RER. However, RER significantly and incrementally increased in time from the 4th through 6th, 8th, and 10th min.
Conclusion: This study revealed that heavy double-pack load carriage for healthy young female participants had significantly lower energy expenditure (normalized by the entire system weight, i.e., the participant's weight plus the weight of the pack) than that of the male participants in a 10-min walking exercise.
Application: The findings of this study indicated that healthy young female participants carried a heavy double-pack with less energy cost (normalized by the entire system weight, i.e., the participant's weight plus the weight of the pack) compared with their male counterparts during a 10-min walking exercise. Copyright © 2018 Human Factors and Ergonomics Society.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)203-213
JournalHuman Factors
Volume61
Issue number2
Early online dateSep 2018
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2019

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Energy Metabolism
Walking
gender-specific factors
expenditures
energy
Weights and Measures
Exercise
gender
Exercise equipment
Weighing
Analysis of variance (ANOVA)
Oxygen Consumption
distribution system
body weight
Young Adult
analysis of variance
Analysis of Variance
Gases
young adult
Body Weight

Citation

Li, S. S. W., Chan, O. H. T., Ng, T. Y., Kam, L. H., Ng, C. Y., Chung, W. C., & Chow, D. H. K. (2019). Gender differences in energy expenditure during walking with backpack and double-pack loads. Human Factors, 61(2), 203-213. doi: 10.1177/0018720818799190

Keywords

  • Energy
  • Physiology
  • Loading
  • Gait
  • Posture