The test measures a person's heart rates at different loads (e.g. faster speeds on a treadmill). The points are plotted on a graph with heart rate on one axis and power (or some correlated measurement such as running speed) on the other axis; the graph's deflection point indicates the aerobic threshold. The heart rate increases (approximately) linearly up to the deflection point, where the heart rate reaches AT (also known as LT, lactate threshold, in more modern nomenclature). The test continues for a while, under increasing load, until the subject has gone well past the anaerobic threshold.
Two studies from the mid 90's showed the Conconi test to be inaccurate and impractical in assessing the anaerobic threshold, while other recent studies are disputing or have disputed this contention, and still others proposed modifications to improve the test.
- Conconi, Francesco; M. Ferrare et al. (1982). "Determination of the anaerobic threshold by a non-invasive field test in runners". Journal of Applied Physiology 52 (4): 869–73. PMID 7085420.
- Jones, Andrew M.; Jonathan H. Doust (1995). "Lack of reliability in Conconi's heart rate deflection point". International Journal of Sports Medicine 16 (8): 541–544. doi:10.1055/s-2007-973051. PMID 8776209.
- Jones, Andrew M.; Jonathan H. Doust (1997). "The Conconi test is not valid for estimation of the lactate turnpoint in runners". Journal of Sports Sciences 15 (4): 385–394. doi:10.1080/026404197367173. PMID 9293415.
- Bourgois, Jan; Coorevits, Pascal; Danneels, Lieven; Witvouw, Erik; Cambier, Dirk; Vrijens, Jacques (2004). "Validity of the heart rate deflection point as a predictor of lactate threshold concepts during cycling". Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research 18 (3): 498–503. doi:10.1519/1533-4287(2004)18<498:VOTHRD>2.0.CO;2. ISSN 1533-4287.
- Sentija, D.; V. Vucetic and C. Markovic (2007). "Validity of the Modified Conconi Running Test". International Journal of Sports Medicine 28 (12): 1006–1011. doi:10.1055/s-2007-965071. PMID 17614011.
- Peak Performance - Issue 23