Ever wondered why some training programmes work for some athletes and not for others? Why some people are genetically gifted athletes? Why there is a fixed set of intervals for all athletes? Why certain drugs work for some and not others? Do compression socks work? What the hell does a VO2 max test tell you, is it just useless information? Is lactate friend or foe? I delve into the sport science world and try to find the answers to train smarter and hopefully become a better athlete. This page is written in my own thoughts and words with a cross-pollination from several other sites and links to the original articles. Some of it might sound like a rant but it is written to make you think. So if you read it without a open mind then your in the wrong place. Enjoy and open your mind.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Latest in fancy kit vs testing. Part 2

(This follows from Latest in fancy kit vs testing. Part 1) Testing is seen as a way to assess how good a athlete has become. If any improvements have been made, to see how long and hard a athlete can push themselves.  We are told we pushed a bigger wattage, we have a better power to weight ratio, we have reached a higher max heart rate, we need to improve on lactate threshold. Would it not be better to look at fitness testing to find a athletes weakest link in the trainable system (Physiology from a different angle) and if the weakest link has become stronger? Thus looking at the individual systems in the body.  To do this we have to change the philosophy, that power and speed and time are objective tools to see a result towards the physiology, that individual physiological reactions are the tool for success.

This idea and the tools used with it will be in another 10 - 15 years time when it is hopefully better accepted by Sport Science in general. We now have great physiological testing tools, NIRS, PhisioFlow, Polar Heart Rate Monitors, Suunto Heart Rate Monitors that give information on EPOC and BioHarness which measures through a heart rate strap body temperature, breathing rate, ECG and pulse. But
due to the development of flashy and high tech gadgets like SRM (which undeniably has had its successes) we are taking a step backwards from physiological information. We have rowing machines and spinning bikes that have wattage information and everybody is pushing for a target wattage and forgets to listen to the bodies response. We have new training devices like the SpiroTiger which is a brilliant training tool when used correctly but due to our own competitiveness we will try to push the biggest bag size and breathing frequency with only short term if little improvement.

We have to wait until people can see and understand physiology from a different angle and that absolute values and graphs are great tools but give limited information for the deeper assessment to the working body.

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