A recent study published in the journal Experimental Physiology found that men are more effective sweaters during exercise. How is one more effective, you ask? Well, when it comes to exercising, women have to work harder and more intensely than men to start sweating.
Japanese scientists at Osaka International University and Kobe University asked four groups of subjects — fit and unfit females and males — to cycle nonstop for a full hour in a controlled climate. As the minutes ticked by, the researchers increased intensity. The results showed that men do sweat more. While fitter people — both males and females — sweat more than unfit people, the degree of improvement was greater in men, with the difference even more pronounced as the level of exercise intensity increased. Basically, the fitter men sweat more and continue to sweat more as a workout gets harder. The unfit females had the worst sweating response of all, and required a higher body temperature than the other groups to begin even sweating.
Researchers say that women are at a bit of a disadvantage compared to men when working out, especially in the heat, because they need to get hotter before they begin sweating, and therefore can’t cool themselves as efficiently as men. More research needs to be done to continue to understand how and why women and men are so different, but researchers believe that men’s higher levels of testosterone play a role. Future studies will look more closely at the relationship between sweating and reproductive hormones, along with the effectiveness of different kinds of sweat, such as sweat that evaporates and and cools compared with sweat that drops off you.
Pretty interesting stuff, huh? Now when you wonder why those girls at the gym never sweat or why that guy lifting weight always leaves a puddle where he’s been, you know why!
November 3rd, 2010