Award Date


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Kinesiology and Nutrition Sciences

First Committee Member

John Mercer

Second Committee Member

Janet Dufek

Third Committee Member

James Navalta

Fourth Committee Member

Nancy Lough

Number of Pages



The purpose of this study was to investigate the effects of wearing a wetsuit on resting cardiovascular parameters (mean arterial pressure (MAP), rate-pressure product (RPP), and heart rate variability (HRV)). Furthermore, the position (i.e., upright vs. prone) as well as the wetsuit size were explored as possible factors that influence the cardiovascular parameters. Twelve male participants (79.1±5.1 kg, 178.4±2.9 cm, 33.3±12.1 years) granted written consent and were assigned two wetsuits based on height, weight, and corresponding manufacturer recommendations. SWS signified the smallest possible wetsuit the subject could fit into according to recommendations, LWS signified the largest wetsuit the subject could fit into, and NWS signified no wetsuit. After wetsuit assignment, participants were fit with a heart rate transmitter chest strap. Order of conditions was counterbalanced with random assignment. For each condition, heart rate and systolic/diastolic blood pressure were measured in both a standing position and a prone position. For each wetsuit size condition and position, heart rate was measured and recorded via a Polar heart rate monitor for 5 minutes continuously, while blood pressure was measured at the wrist 3 times over the 5 min period at equal intervals between each measurement (t=100 sec, 200 sec, 300 sec) and averaged. This process (5 min heart rate recording, 3 blood pressure measurements during the 5 min recording) was repeated in a standing and prone position for all conditions. Data were analyzed using a 2 (position) x 3 (wetsuit) repeated measures ANOVA (α=.05) for MAP, RPP, LF, HF, LF/HF ration, and SDNN. When 'wetsuit condition' was a significant main effect, a simple effects post hoc test was run comparing the NWS to SWS and LWS. Results showed no dependent variables were influenced by an interaction between position and wetsuit condition. MAP and LF/HF ratio were both influenced by wetsuit condition. MAP was significantly higher for SWS than NWS (p=.024), while LF/HF ratio was significantly lower for SWS compared to NWS (p=.032). RPP, LF, LF/HF ratio, and HF were all influenced by position with RPP (p=


Athletes – Death; Bathing suits – Physiological effect; Cardiac arrest; Cardiovascular system; Diving suits – Physiological effect; Mean arterial pressure; Sudden cardiac death; Triathlon; Wetsuit


Cardiology | Kinesiology | Sports Studies

File Format


Degree Grantor

University of Nevada, Las Vegas




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