Viral Capacity Lab

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  • Topic: 3rd millennium, Lung, Lung volumes
  • Pages : 7 (1536 words )
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  • Published : September 5, 2011
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Vital Capacity Lab


The respiratory system is crucial for life. Its function is to allow gas exchange throughout the whole body since all the cells in the body require oxygen. Without oxygen, they would die. Oxygen is taken into the body through the airways, then absorbed in to the lungs and transported throughout the body in the blood. In addition, the lungs give out carbon dioxide in to the atmosphere. The respiratory system consists of the lungs, airways, nasal passage, throat, mouth and diaphragm. Molecules of oxygen and carbon dioxide are passively exchanged by diffusion. The exchange process takes place in the alveolar region of the lungs. Vital Capacity is a term referring to the maximum volume someone can breathe in to their lungs. It is the maximal volume forcefully expired after maximum inspiration and is usually measured by a spirometer; however there are also many different ways. With a spirometer, the person inhales as deeply as possible, filling the lungs to the total lung capacity, and then exhaling it in the spirometer. In this lab, the spirometer was provided by the school, with disposable cardboard mouthpieces per person for hygiene. There are many factors that can affect vital capacity such as how fit a person is, height, obesity, and daily habits such as smoking. The factor chosen to be observed in this lab is how often the student plays sports; for example weather they play a one season varsity sport or one season varsity, one season JV sport. Exercise is an interesting aspect to observe since from experience, we know that our lungs can respond to the body’s changing need for oxygen. When we exercise dynamically, we begin to breathe faster and deeper in order to keep going.

Research Question
What is the relationship between students who play varsity and JV sports and their resting vital capacity?

Independent Variable – The number of different seasons of sports each person plays (example: 1 season varsity, 2 season JV or 3 season varsity) Dependent Variable – Vital Capacity (mm)
Control Variable – Type of spirometer, same survey distributed

1 Spirometer
Disposable cardboard mouthpieces
Paper towels
Data collection Survey 1 and 2
Writing tools
Computer (for graphing)

(DO NOT touch the spirometer if you have any signs of communicable illness such as a cold, flu or sore throat) 1)Wash your hands.
2)Set a new cardboard mouth piece in the nozzle of the spirometer. 3)Hold the Spiropet with one hand, and make sure the indicator points at zero. If it does not, adjust to zero by moving upper outer ring to right or left. 4)While standing, inhale as deeply as possible, stretching body upward. 5)When lungs are full, set mouthpiece between lips. Keep the Spiropet horizontal. 6)Breathe out strongly in one motion, without leaking, exhaling fully within 5 or 6 seconds. 7)After breathing out, read measurement on indicator. Repeat 2 times and record the maximum value at DCS#16. 8)Remove, but keep your mouthpiece.

9)Switch partners and repeat.
10)When you are done using the spirometer, throw your mouth piece away in the trash can and wash your hands. 11)Then proceed to fill out the Data Collection Survey sheet that asks about personal habits and activities. 12)Enter all data on computer in the group document.

Data Collection and Processing

Data Collection
Table of 49 Students with the number of seasons of sports each play, whether it is a JV or Varsity Sport, and the Students Vital Capacity at rest Note: It does make a difference between Varsity or JV sports because Varsity practices 5 times a week whereas JV is 3 times a week Student ## of Seasons of Sports PlayedVarsityJunior VarsityVital Capacity (mm) at rest 13302900

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