You’re about to hop on an exercise bike and peddle your heart out, but will having to wear a face mask make it harder to breathe while you work out?
Not according to new research that suggests healthy people can safely wear a face mask while doing vigorous exercise.
The scientists assessed the breathing, heart rate, blood pressure and blood oxygen levels of 12 volunteers as they worked out on an exercise bike while wearing and not wearing a mask. There were six women and six men, average age 40. None had health problems.
There were a few minor differences in some measurements when the participants wore or didn’t wear a mask, but no indication of any risk to health, according to the study published March 8 in the European Respiratory Journal.
The findings suggest that it’s safe for healthy people to wear masks during intense exercise, said study author Elisabetta Salvioni, from the Centro Cardiologico Monzino, IRCCS, in Milan, Italy.