VO2max – this is the maximal oxygen uptake which indicates aerobic fitness – the ability to sustain work for prolonged periods. It essentially shows the efficiency of the CVR system. There are two types – relative and absolute. Relative VO2max is more helpful to us as it considers body weight. It is expressed in millimeters (ml) of oxygen per body weight (kg) per minute (min) – ml/kg/min. I will be using VO2max as a test of my aerobic power and will be trying to improve it by the end of my program. I have chosen two main tests for endurance. Both are good tests because they both rely upon aerobic and muscular endurance.
Multistage Fitness Test (Bleep Test): Aim is to reach the highest level possible. You run till you can’t take any more so it is a real test of your maximum oxygen in take. You run forwards and backwards between two points, 20m apart in time to bleeps which get quicker as the levels increase. This is very good for team sport players as it is the right length to test aerobic and muscular endurance, also containing short turns which could benefit a footballer and would not suit a straight forward endurance athlete. It is also very useful as a accurate value for VO2max can be calculated, corresponding to which level you reached;
Level 8 = 40 ml/kg/min Level 10 = 47 ml/kg/min Level 12 = 54 ml/kg/min Level 14 = 61 ml/kg/min Level 16 = 68 ml/kg/min These VO2max scores can be calculated precisely, to which part of the level you reached, on a level converter on the website www.topendsports.com. Cooper Test (12 Minute Run) This is an alternative test for endurance fitness and it is simply the maximum distance run in 12 minutes. This again gives a good VO2max value and also tests muscular endurance. VO2max for this test can be calculated using the formula; d = distance (km) VO2max = (22.351 X d) – 11.288 (ml/kg/min) An elite VO2max score for a footballer would be around 60-65 ml/kg/min. Baring this in mind I am going to aim to get a VO2max of around 55 ml/kg/min.
Strength Testing Upper body strength tests: Press Up max – this is a test of upper-body strength. It is a test of how many press ups you can do in one minute. It must be monitored carefully to make sure the press ups are correctly carried out and counted. An excellent score for men would be anything greater than 45, so by the end of my training program I am going to aim to be able to do around 50 in a minute. 1RM Bench Press – this is the maximum upper body strength test. It is a test of the maximum weight you can lift and do one repetition of.
Both of these upper body strength tests will indicate to me, if my upper body strength is improving as a result of my training program. Lower body strength tests: Sergeant Jump – this is a test of maximum anaerobic leg power. This relates to jumping in football in order to win a header and in general strength of tackles. You basically make a mark at the highest point you can reach standing, then crouch and jump up as high as you can, making a mark at the highest point reached.
The difference between the marks will be your score. A good score will be anything between 55 – 70 cm, so I will aim to get a in the top half of that range. 1RM Squat – this is the maximum leg strength test. This is considered to be the most functional of leg strength tests. It is a test of the maximum weight that you can only do one repetition on. Both of these lower body strength tests will give me clear indications in any improvement in the strength of my lower body as a result of my training program.