Bruce treadmill test

Bruce treadmill testThe Bruce treadmill test is a maximal running test performed on a treadmill. It is one of the most commonly used tests in USA.


1. You need a treadmill that has reliable incline and speed possibilities.
2. Follow the protocol described below. (printer friendly pdf-sheet click here)
3. Note the time at the point of exhaustion.

Every three minutes speed and grade is changed as follows:

 Time (min)
 3  6  9  12  15  18  21
 Speed (mph)
 1.7  2.5  3.4  4.2  5.0  5.5  6.0
 Grade (%)
 10  12 14   16  18  20  22

Should be read like this: the test begins with speed 1.7 mph and incline at 10%. After 3 minutes speed is increased to 2.5 mph and incline to 12%.

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This calculator is also included in Fitness Test pro
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ACSM's Guidelines for exercise testing and prescription. Seventh edition. pp 99-100


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#11 Arvind 2013-07-11 17:14
Most machines do not allow increase in the slope by 2%, it is only by 5%.
#10 ANTHONY 2013-06-16 08:40
#9 John 2012-11-18 11:28
It is a walking exercise, not a running exercise. Maybe requires adjusting of the speed
#8 brian heise 2011-08-31 19:46
see wikepedia, slope is rise over run or grade.

for example a 45 degree ange with the horizon describes a right angle. also a 45 degree angle with horizon.

rise over run is 1/1 equals a 100 persent grade at a angle of 45 degrees.

as is all falls out, the grade in % is about twice the angle in degrees with the horizon.

so if you complete stage 7 bruce protocol at 6 mph and 22% grade, you are exercising at about 11 degrees with the horizon.

I believe this correlates with incline 11/15 with most treadmills.

see grade and degrees on wikepedia.
#7 Aidan Emmerson 2011-02-17 11:34
i did this 3 times non stop
#6 Weslo 2010-08-27 02:04
Thanks for the post! Treadmills are such useful pieces of equipment. They are so convenient, easy on your joints, and having one in your home helps you remember every day to exercise.
#5 Sandy 2010-08-01 09:40
At pdf search I've found an interesting comparison between Bruce and Balke treadmill tests. Here is the page: . The results are quite interesting. As for mr, I prefer Bruce test.
#4 Morten Z 2009-11-04 21:04
It is true that the calculation does not go beyond 24 minutes, but only very few people will be able to achieve that. An aerobic fitness of above 75 ml/kg/min means that you rank as a winning elite athlete.
#3 Steve C 2009-11-04 14:24
It seems that this test will "max" at 24 minutes and after that the scores decline. How does one compute beyond the 21 minutes?
#2 Morten Z 2009-10-20 14:40
Your treadmill only allows you to do the first 9 minutes of this test, because the maximal inline on your treadmill is 15 %.
Stage 1 - should be at 10 %
Stage 2 - should be at 12 %

That is one of the drawbacks of this test, that it requires you to have access to a treadmill that can handle a steep incline.
#1 Audrey Lee 2009-10-19 23:18
I have a precor treadmill and am trying to figure out the amount of incline I should be at. I don't understand the percentage. Could you refigure for me. In other word:
Stage 1 - I should be at 1.0
Stage2 - Do I bump it up to incline 2.0?
Stage 3 - 3.0?

My treadmill goes up to an incline of 15.0.


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