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Application of high-intensity training methods in clinical populations- concepts, progress, and challenges

Guest Editors: Prof. Claudio Kater, Dr Flavio Cadegiani (Federal University of São Paulo, Brazil), and Dr Fred DiMenna (Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, USA)

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BMC Sports Science, Medicine, and Rehabilitation is welcoming submissions to a thematic series entitled “Application of high-intensity training in clinical populations – concepts, progress, and challenges”.

The effectiveness of high-intensity training, including high-intensity interval training (HIIT) and high-intensity functional training (HIFT), has long been recognized by athletes with this type of exercise being accepted as a viable form of endurance training in healthy populations. However, it is, perhaps, the use of this exercise training in the clinical setting that holds the most promise. Generally speaking, a conservative approach is employed with clinical populations based on the belief that it is better to be safe than sorry. However, to deny patients potential benefits that are exclusive to this high-intensity approach may be every bit as irresponsible as having them perform exercise that exceeds their disease-related limitations.

A growing body of feasibility studies suggests that within reason, high-intensity routines are safe, and, importantly, more effective than low-intensity exercise for improving the quality of life in the face of disease. This is counter-intuitive to the assumption that clinical populations should work at low intensity to prevent worsening of their disease state. Populations that may benefit from high-intensity exercise include individuals with serious cancer, cardiovascular, pulmonary, and endocrine disorders.

It is in this context that BMC Sports Science, Medicine, and Rehabilitation is launching a special issue exploring the potential the usefulness of high-intensity interval training in clinical-based rehabilitation. Safety, efficacy, and biomechanic profiles, as well as patient-related outcome reporting, are aspects that need to be clarified to assess clinical use. We are welcoming Research Articles, Case reports, Debates and Reviews on all aspects of research into high-intensity training, including translational science, clinical investigations and epidemiological studies.

To submit your manuscript, please use our online submission system at BMC Sports Science, Medicine, and Rehabilitation. Please indicate in your cover letter that you would like the article to be considered for the ‘Application of high-intensity training methods in clinical populations’ special series.

If you would like to inquire about the suitability of a study for consideration or would like to propose a topic for a Debate or Review article, please email a presubmission enquiry to

Deadline for submissions: 31 March 2020

Papers appearing in this thematic series will appear on this collection page upon publication.