Résumé : Twenty patients with stable COPD (mean age 67.8 yr; mean FEV1 1.08 l), all limited by ventilation at maximum exercise, were randomly allocated after a four week control period, to an eight week programme of either inspiratory resistive training (IRT), with a P Flex device, or conventional breathing retraining (BR). Exercise performance was evaluated every four weeks, using a 12-min walking test, an incremental progressive exercise on a cycle ergometer and a cycle endurance test. Inspiratory muscle endurance was measured as the highest tolerated resistance for 10 min on a P Flex device. IRT produced a significant (p < 0.05) increase in the highest tolerated resistance, but IRT and BR failed to improve lung function or exercise performance. The present study shows that in COPD patients with ventilatory limitation on exercise an IRT programme may fail to improve exercise performance, in spite of an efficient training effect on the endurance of the inspiratory muscles.