Effects of high-intensity interval training frequency on perceptual responses and future physical activity participation

Pinelopi S. Stavrinou, Gregory C. Bogdanis, Christoforos D. Giannaki, Gerasimos Terzis, Marios Hadjicharalambous

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5 Citations (Scopus)


The effectiveness of high-intensity interval training (HIIT) in inducing positive physiological adaptations is well documented. However, its impact on perceptual responses and on future physical activity (PA) engagement is less evaluated. The present study aimed to examine the effects of HIIT frequency on perceptual responses, health-related quality of life (HRQOL), and its influence in future PA participation. Thirty-five inactive adults were randomly assigned to a control (CON) and to 2 training groups that performed HIIT (10 × 60 s cycling, ~83% peak power output) for 2 (HIIT-2) or 3 (HIIT-3) times per week for 8 weeks. Following the HIIT intervention, exercise enjoyment, HRQOL, and the intention to implement HIIT in the future were evaluated. Eight weeks after cessation of training, follow-up evaluations of HRQOL and PA were performed. Following the intervention, both training frequencies induced high levels of enjoyment (HIIT-2: 6.0 ± 1.1, HIIT-3: 6.0 ± 1.1, scale 1–7), improved HRQOL (HIIT-2: p = 0.040; HIIT-3: p = 0.024), and reported intention to implement HIIT in the future (HIIT-3: 100%, HIIT-2: 93% of participants). At follow-up, HIIT-3 participants reported higher completion of HIIT compared with HIIT-2 and CON (p < 0.05). Both training groups sustained improved HRQOL and increased vigorous and total PA (p < 0.05). This study showed that performing HIIT either 2 or 3 times per week is an enjoyable exercise modality that promotes a sustainable increase in habitual PA levels and improves HRQOL. Moreover, the higher training frequency resulted in greater HIIT completion in the 8-week period following the cessation of training.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)952-957
Number of pages6
JournalApplied Physiology, Nutrition and Metabolism
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2019


  • Enjoyment
  • Exercise adherence
  • Follow-up
  • Frequency
  • High intensity training
  • Rating of perceived exertion


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