Simultaneous measurement of O2 uptake (VO2) enabled the establishment of the relationship between the rate of the energy expenditure (PVO2) and Po (since when swimming on the MAD system Po = Pd). These individual relationships describing the mechanical efficiency (8-12%) were then used to estimate Po in free swimming from measurements of VO2. Because Pd was directly measured at each velocity studied by use of the MAD system, ep could be calculated according to the equation ep = Pd/(Pd + Pk) = Pd/Po. For the four top class swimmers studied, ep was found to range from 46 to 77%. Total efficiency, defined as the product of mechanical and propelling efficiency, ranged from 5 to 8%.
Seminal research into swimming performance. An example of the wide ranging interests and scientific curiosity of Professor Anthony Sargeant. The data for this publication were collected by Huub Toussaint an extremely talented Dutch PhD student who was supported by Professor Anthony Sargeant. Initially drafts of this innovative research were extensively revised by Tony and sent back to Huub for more work. Also with the perspective and experience brought by Tony, came an instruction to place the research paper in the top applied physiology journal for such work.
Journal of Applied Physiology
J Appl Physiol. 1988 Dec;65(6):2506-12