Synonyms: Stress Examination


This is a device for diagnostics in ergometry. There are many different devices to choose from, which can be used individually. The standard ergometers that are used most are certainly the bicycle ergometers.

These are available in two versions, either lying down, so-called recumbent bikes, or sitting. Accordingly, the ergometry devices can be adapted to the needs of the patients. For example, the recumbent version is suitable for people with back problems, because the ergometry should not place any additional strain on the test persons, but only record their performance.

They can be braked either mechanically or electrically and independently of the speed. They are easy to operate and are an easily surmountable obstacle for many patients. Thus a large spectrum of patients can be covered by ergometry.

The treadmill ergometer is particularly suitable for active athletes or, depending on the type of sport, a rower ergometer, for example. In addition, there is an ergometer for virtually every type of requirement, including a hand-crank ergometer. In order to increase the load, the speed per minute or the watt number of the bicycle ergometer is increased.

With the treadmill, the treadmill speed or the treadmill incline can be changed accordingly. The 6-minute walking test is an alternative for patients who have a reduced performance of the left ventricle and therefore cannot use either the bicycle or treadmill ergometer. In this case, a ground-level walking route is selected (e.g. a corridor), which the patient should walk for six minutes. After the time has elapsed, the length of the route and the patient’s condition are evaluated.


Ergometry is applied to both healthy people and sick patients. The state of health, resilience (subjective) and performance (objective) are assessed. Exercise tolerance is understood as the highest possible level of stress that the test person can achieve on the ergometer.

Furthermore, ergometry can be used to derive training recommendations for the practice. Indicators for ergometry are diagnostics, therapy monitoring and prognosis estimation.

  • Diagnostics: This refers to the assessment of functional status, fitness for sports, partly for scientific purposes and the search for latent diseases.
  • Therapy monitoring: Here, the focus is on monitoring during medication, rehabilitation measures (e.g. after a heart attack) and after intervention measures (e.g. heart surgery).
  • Prognosis assessment: to evaluate ischemia or the probability of possible coronary heart disease in the presence of risk factors (e.g. high blood pressure)