Reliability and validity of skin temperature measurement by telemetry thermistors and a thermal camera during exercise in the heat

C. A. James*, A. J. Richardson, P. W. Watt, N. S. Maxwell

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review

    62 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    New technologies afford convenient modalities for skin temperature (TSKIN) measurement, notably involving wireless telemetry and non-contact infrared thermometry. The purpose of this study was to investigate the validity and reliability of skin temperature measurements using a telemetry thermistor system (TT) and thermal camera (TC) during exercise in a hot environment. Each system was compared against a certified thermocouple, measuring the surface temperature of a metal block in a thermostatically controlled waterbath. Fourteen recreational athletes completed two incremental running tests, separated by one week. Skin temperatures were measured simultaneously with TT and TC compared against a hard-wired thermistor system (HW) throughout rest and exercise. Post hoc calibration based on waterbath results displayed good validity for TT (mean bias [MB]=-0.18°C, typical error [TE]=0.18°C) and reliability (MB=-0.05°C, TE=0.31°C) throughout rest and exercise. Poor validity (MB=-1.4°C, TE=0.35°C) and reliability (MB=-0.65°C, TE=0.52°C) was observed for TC, suggesting it may be best suited to controlled, static situations. These findings indicate TT systems provide a convenient, valid and reliable alternative to HW, useful for measurements in the field where traditional methods may be impractical.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)141-149
    Number of pages9
    JournalJournal of Thermal Biology
    Volume45
    Early online date3 Sept 2014
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - Oct 2014

    Scopus Subject Areas

    • Biochemistry
    • Physiology
    • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
    • Developmental Biology

    User-Defined Keywords

    • Exercise
    • Heat stress
    • Reliability
    • Skin temperature
    • Thermal camera
    • Validity

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