During Phase One, the treadmill is set to a speed of 3.5mph and there are gradual increases in grade over a five minute period. This is immediately followed by Phase Two, an eight minute period of constant work at 3.5mph and a 10% grade.
Once Phase Two is complete, you will immediately progress to Phase Three. During this phase the treadmill speed remains at 3.5mph but the grade increases 1% every minute to a maximum of 15%. Once a 15% grade is reached, the speed will increase by 0.5 mph each minute while the grade remains at 15% until you can no longer continue.
Once you have indicated you can no longer continue, you must complete Phase Four, which is 5 minutes on a flat treadmill at a slow speed. The protocol will continue until exhaustion or until other symptoms dictate that the test is terminated. You may stop the test at any time due to fatigue or discomfort.
In order to pass the treadmill test, you must complete the five minute Phase One, the eight minute Phase Two and the five minute Phase Four (for a total of at least 18 minutes). During the test, expired gases are monitored with an automated metabolic measurement system to calculate the rate of oxygen consumption. Heart rate is monitored continuously with a telemetry system.
At the end of the test you will be asked to rate your experience and overall exertion you felt during the test, based on the BORG Scale. This rating is used for clinical purposes only and has no bearing on the results of your assessment.