Date of Publication


Degree Type

Honors Thesis


Kinesiology, Sport Studies and Physical Education

First Advisor

Dr. Brooke Starkoff, Assistant Professor


Dance requires multiple physical attributes along with technical skill. One physical attribute that often gets left behind is aerobic condition even though it is a key component for optimal performance. Volume of oxygen consumption (VO2) during dance class and rehearsal has been well documented. Dancers work at a lower VO2 during class than rehearsal (5, 8, 9, 12, 16). However, there are few comparisons between rehearsal and performance of VO2. PURPOSE: To identify and compare a difference in intensity during performance and rehearsal for collegiate dancers. METHODS: Seven collegiate dancers who were currently in rehearsal for an upcoming performance participated in this study. Five participants were females () and two were males (). On the first visit, each participant participated in a Bruce Protocol treadmill test (Table 1) using a portable metabolic cart. During the second visit, rehearsal data was obtained during scheduled rehearsal time while the dancers wore the portable metabolic cart. During the third visit, performance data was obtained in a performance like setting while the dancers wore the portable metabolic cart. A paired samples t-test was used to determine if there was significance between maximal volume of oxygen consumption (VO2max) and VO2 achieved during rehearsal and performance. RESULTS: Average VO2 during rehearsal was 30.59 mL/kg/min (64.21% of VO2max) and average VO2 during performance was 33.49 mL/kg/min (70.07% of VO2max) (Table 3).Significant difference was found between percent average VO2 of VO2max (p=0.037) and percent max VO2 of VO2max (45.36 mL/kg/min, 94.18% of VO2max vs. 47.71 mL/kg/min, 99.19% of VO2max, p =0.040) during rehearsal and performance (Table 3). CONCLUSION: Dancers perform at intensities near or at their maximal VO2. During performance the dancers were reaching 99% of their VO2max compared to 94% of their VO2max during rehearsal. This indicates that rehearsal is not properly preparing dancers for the aerobic component of performance.