The purpose of this study was to investigate the effect of length of time of eating prior to exercise on physical performance. The literature review seems to suggest that through the years there has been some disagreement on the effects of time of food intake on subsequent performance. Times from one-half hour to four hours have been suggested as the ideal time for a pre-event meal to be ingested to have the greatest positive effect on athletic performance.
Statement of the Problem:
The problem was to evaluate the effects of time of food intake on physical performance. When tested by five segments of the AAHPERD Youth Fitness Test, is there a significant difference in the performance of high school students, if the time of food intake is twenty minutes before performance in comparison with the time of food intake 105-minutes before performance?
The students who participated in this study were chosen at random from the freshmen and junior coed physical education classes at Campion Academy.
Subjects engaged in a conditioning program prior to testing. A counterbalanced random group design was used. On day one, subjects in Groups A and B ate the suggested lunch. Group A waited twenty minutes after eating to perform the pull-up test, 50-yard dash and shuttle run test. On the same day, Group B waited 105 minutes to exercise and do the same test. Two days later, after waiting the same time after eating, the groups did the last two tests—sit-ups and mile-and-one-half run. After a period of five days, Groups A and B exchanged their testing times and repeated all fitness tests.
For each of the five tests, a mean score was computed for the twenty minute group and the 105-minute group. The five mean differences were evaluated for significance at the .05 alpha level using the t-test for correlated groups.
In the pull-up test for boys, the t ratio was 0.00, which is not significant at the .05 level. In the hang test, the t ratio was .01, which is not significant at the .05 level.
In the 50-yard dash, the t ratio was .35, which is not significant at the .05 level.
In the sit-up test, the t ratio was 1.50, which is not significant at the .05 level.
And in the mile-and-one-half run, the t ratio was .01 indicating no significant difference at the .05 alpha level. In all the tests, the null hypothesis was accepted.
The results of this study are consistent with many of the earlier investigations and lead support to the theory that when a person eats is not as important as other factors in determining a subject's test score. It can be suggested from the findings of the study that it time of ingestion was the dominating factor in test scores it would be revealed in the outcome.
Within the limitations of the study, the following conclusion is drawn:
There is no difference in the performance of subjects on the five segments of the AAHPERD Youth Fitness Test--pull up (flexed arm hang test), shuttle run test, 50-yead dash, sit-up test, mile-and-one-half run-- if the time of food intake is twenty minutes before performance in comparison with the time of food intake 105 minutes before performance.
Physical Education and Health
Vernon L. Scheffel
Walter S. Hamerslough
Master of Science (MS)
Year Degree Awarded
Date (Title Page)
Library of Congress/MESH Subject Headings
Physical Education and Training -- methods; Eating
Loma Linda University Libraries
This title appears here courtesy of the author, who has granted Loma Linda University a limited, non-exclusive right to make this publication available to the public. The author retains all other copyrights.
Windemuth, Timothy Martin, "Time of Food Intake and its Effect on Physical Performance" (1983). Loma Linda University Electronic Theses, Dissertations & Projects. 731.
Loma Linda University Electronic Theses and Dissertations
Loma Linda University. Del E. Webb Memorial Library. University Archives