Muscle oxygen uptake, muscle blood flow, mitochondrial capacity and muscle oxygen saturation as assessed by near-infrared spectroscopy in sports performance, health and disease


Near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) and functional Near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS muscle-mapping) are non-invasive and portable ambulatory techniques to assess muscle oxygen uptake muscle oxygen uptake (mVO2), muscle blood flow (mbf), mitochondrial capacity and muscle oxygen saturation (mSAO2) in athletic endeavours, health and disease. This clusterof projects (and some student-suggested projects) will use NIR and fNIRS to quatify the changes to muscle performance during acute exercise and following exercise training.


Professor Glen Davis

Research Location

Exercise, Health and Performance Research Group

Program Type



The Clinical Exercise and Rehabilitation Unit comprising a multi-disciplinary research team are conducting a cluster of research projects available to goal-seeking and talented postgraduate students into using near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) and functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) in health and disease. These non-invasive measurements can be combined with other techniques (listed below) and combined with sports activities exercise assessments and exercise training in different populations.  The cluster of projects include:

  • NIRS or fNIRS analysis of sports performance, healthy populations who exercise and disabled or diseased populations undertaking acute exercise (eg. HIIT, moderate continuous exercise, long-duration low intensity exercise) or exercise training
  • “Central” cardiac performance vs “peripheral” muscle metabolism as possible limitations to exercise sports performance, healthy populations who exercise and disabled or diseased populations using NIRS and cardiac output/stroke volume
In these cluster of projects the main outcomes measured include physiological and functional/sports outcomes and clinical outcomes to patients. As such, appropriately interested students would include those from the following disciplines: Exercise Physiology, Neuroscience, Physiotherapy, and Medicine.

Additional Information

Scholarships are not available from the research team, however may be applied for Techniques used:

  • Near-infrared Spectroscopy (3 systems – 1 laboratory, 2 ambulatory)
  • Functional Near-infrared Spectroscopy
  • Electromyography
  • Exercise Metabolic Cart (including cardiac output)
  • Treadmills and other exercise devices
  • Cardiac Bioimpedance (beat-by beat cardiac Output)
  • Portapres Ambulatory Blood Pressure Analyzer
  • pQCT and DEXA analyzers for bone architecture

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Near infrared spectroscopy, NIRS, fNIRS, Muscle SAO2, MBF, mitochondria capacity, Disability, disease, neurology, cardiovascular disease, sports and athletes performance

Opportunity ID

The opportunity ID for this research opportunity is: 2521

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