Date of Award

Spring 5-8-2021

Document Type


Degree Name

Bachelor of Science (BS)




College of Science

First Advisor

Jakob Lauver


The use of blood flow restriction (BFR) has skyrocketed in popularity in the past few years as a therapeutic modality. Studies have shown that the application of BFR at 20-30% of maximal oxygen consumption (VO2max) yields similar improvements in cardiovascular fitness, muscle mass, and strength when compared with traditional exercise at 60-90% of VO2max. The substantially lower workload accompanying BFR allows for more tolerable workloads in special populations, such as those recovering from musculoskeletal injury. Because previous studies regarding BFR have mainly focused on bilateral BFR, it is unclear how unilateral BFR compares to bilateral BFR. Therefore, the purpose of this investigation was to examine the acute physiological and perceptual responses to BFR applied bilateral and unilateral during walking. Participants completed three randomized walking trials; control, bilateral BFR, and unilateral BFR. During each trial muscle excitation, tissue oxygenation, VO2, heart rate, discomfort, and rating of perceived exertion were assessed