Chapter 21. The Brain and Fatigue

  1. Ronald J. Maughan PhD
  1. Timothy D. Noakes MBChB, MD, DSc,
  2. Helen Crewe BSc (Hons) and
  3. Ross Tucker PhD

Published Online: 10 FEB 2009

DOI: 10.1002/9781444303315.ch21

Olympic Textbook of Science in Sport

Olympic Textbook of Science in Sport

How to Cite

Noakes, T. D., Crewe, H. and Tucker, R. (2008) The Brain and Fatigue, in Olympic Textbook of Science in Sport (ed R. J. Maughan), Wiley-Blackwell, Oxford, UK. doi: 10.1002/9781444303315.ch21

Editor Information

  1. School of Sport and Exercise Sciences, Loughborough University, Loughborough, UK

Author Information

  1. UCT/MRC Research Unit for Exercise Science and Sports Medicine, Department of Human Biology, University of Cape Town, Newlands, South Africa

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 10 FEB 2009
  2. Published Print: 28 NOV 2008

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9781405156387

Online ISBN: 9781444303315



  • brain and fatigue;
  • aerobic adenosine triphosphate (ATP);
  • central fatigue model;
  • central governor model;
  • teleoanticipation and perceived exertion;
  • ratings of perceived exertion (RPE);
  • brain activity and fatigue;
  • RPE set at beginning of exercise bout;
  • “limitation” of maximal exercise performance


This chapter contains sections titled:

  • The peripheral fatigue model

  • The central fatigue model

  • The central governor model

  • Brain activity and fatigue

  • The conscious perception of fatigue

  • Conclusion

  • References