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rating of perceived exertion (RPE)

a scale for quantifying perceived exertion, with 6 being extremely light exertion and 20 being extremely hard. The American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) has recalibrated the scale from 1 to 10. The ACSM has also established minimal guidelines pertaining to the frequency, intensity, and duration of exercise needed to produce a training effect.


Abbreviation for rate of perceived exertion; rating of perceived exertion.

rate of perceived exertion



The intensity of exercise as subjectively gauged by the individual who is exercising. The corresponding written descriptions range from “very light” to “very, very hard.” The scale correlates well with cardiorespiratory and metabolic variables such as minute ventilation, heart rate, and blood lactate levels. See: Borg dyspnea scale

Patient care

Two common rating scales are used to assess RPE. One is scored from 0 (no effort) to 10 (maximal effort), with descriptions in between, such as "very light" or "very hard" exercise. The scale correlates well with cardiorespiratory and metabolic variables such as minute ventilation, heart rate, and blood lactate levels, and can be used as a substitute for monitoring these variables directly. Another RPE scale ranges from 6 to 20. In this self-scoring system "very, very light exertion" is rated as a 7, and "very, very hard exertion" is rated as 19. Optimal physical training occurs in the range that exceeds "fairly light exertion" but is less than "very hard" exertion (about 12–16). The scales help people to monitor their workouts, and may be esp. helpful in clinical settings when patients are unable to take their own pulse during exercise or if they have abnormal heart rate responses to exercise.

References in periodicals archive ?
This study showed that adding grapes to the diet prevented blindness in mice by significantly decreasing the build-up of lipofuscin and preventing the oxidative damage to the RPE, thus ensuring optimal functioning of this critical part of the retina.
Subjects were asked to estimate their acute RPE within 10 seconds of completing each set, utilising a category ratio (CR) 10-point RPE scale specific to strength training.
Clearly, being given the opportunity to critique and provide direct input into RPE served to encourage physician participation.
Differences between RPE and LPF are particularly likely to manifest themselves in relation to level to previous effort.
The conjugates in this work were assembled with sulfhydryl-modified RPE as the core protein.
However, empirical research generally does not support the use of RPE in practice (e.
Handle angle had a significant effect on wrist RPE (p [less than] .
In this model, individuals provide three ratings: (1) central RPE which is associated with feelings from the heart and lungs, (2) local RPE which is associated with sensations arising from the exercising muscles and joints, and (3) overall RPE which combines local and central factors.
Video analysis has shown that pigment granule movements in RPE cells are slower but otherwise similar to those previously reported for dermal melanophores (unpubl.
The researchers said they now have a better idea about how to generate and replace RPE cells, which appear to be among the first type of cells to stop working properly in AMD.
Further studies in a mouse model of ciliopathy confirmed an important temporal relationship: Looking across several early development stages, the RPE defects preceded the photoreceptor degeneration, which provides additional insights into ciliopathy-induced retinal degeneration.