Impellizzeri FM1, Marcora SM3, Rampinini E1, Mognoni P2, Sassi A1.

1,Human Performance Laboratory, S S Mapei,  Italy;2, Consiglio Nazionale di Ricerca – Istituto Bioimmagini e Fisiologia Molecolare, Segrate, Milano, Italy; 3, School of Sport, Health and Exercise Sciences, University of Wales Bangor, UK

OBJECTIVES: To examine the relations between maximal and submaximal indices of aerobic fitness and off road cycling performance in a homogeneous group of high level mountain bikers. METHODS: 12 internationally competitive mountain bikers completed the study. Maximum oxygen uptake (VO2max), peak power output (PPO), power output (PO), and oxygen uptake (VO2) at first (VT) and second (RCT) ventilatory thresholds were measured in the laboratory, and correlated with race time during a cross country circuit race. RESULTS: The only physiological indices of aerobic fitness correlated with off road cycling performance were PO and VO2 at RCT when normalised to body mass (r = -0.63 and r = -0.66, respectively; p<0.05). VT, VO2max, and PPO were not correlated to performance in this homogeneous group of high level mountain bikers. CONCLUSIONS: The results of this study suggest that submaximal indices of aerobic fitness such as PO and VO2 at RCT are more important determinants of off road cycling performance than maximal indices such as PPO and VO2max. This study confirms the importance of body mass for mountain biking performance. As aerobic fitness explained only 40% of the variance, other physiological and technical factors should be investigated, as they may be important determinants of cross country performance among elite mountain bikers.PURPOSE: The ability to accurately control and monitor internal training load is an important aspect of effective coaching. The aim of this study was to apply in soccer the RPE-based method proposed by Foster et al. to quantify internal training load (session-RPE) and to assess its correlations with various methods used to determine internal training load based on the HR response to exercise. METHODS: Nineteen young soccer players (mean +/- SD: age 17.6 +/- 0.7 yr, weight 70.2 +/- 4.7 kg, height 178.5 +/- 4.8 cm, body fat 7.5 +/- 2.2%, VO2max, 57.1 +/- 4.0 mL x kg x min) were involved in the study. All subjects performed an incremental treadmill test before and after the training period during which lactate threshold (1.5 mmol x L above baseline) and OBLA (4.0 mmol x L) were determined. The training loads completed during the seven training weeks were determined multiplying the session RPE (CR10-scale) by session duration in minutes. These session-RPE values were correlated with training load measures obtained from three different HR-based methods suggested by Edwards, Banister, and Lucia, respectively. RESULTS: Individual internal loads of 479 training sessions were collected. All individual correlations between various HR-based training load and session-RPE were statistically significant (from r = 0.50 to r = 0.85, P < 0.01).CONCLUSION: The results of this study show that the session-RPE can be considered a good indicator of global internal load of soccer training. This method does not require particular expensive equipment and can be very useful and practical for coaches and athletic trainer to monitor and control internal load, and to design periodization strategies.

Br J Sports Med. 2005 Oct;39(10):747-51.