Endurance, is it really necessity to be trained for endurance?

Endurance is a very crucial part of every athlete’s performance because if you are very strong, agile, quick but don’t have endurance you won’t be able to have the competitive advantage over your opponents. That’s why it’s very important to develop your endurance level in order to be able to gain and maintain a competitive advantage, like the saying goes ‘like a walk in the park’. Wouldn’t it be great to compete but feel like you were only taking a walk in the park?

What it is and what it takes

Endurance training is the capability to develop and be able support the fundamental movement level needed for a particular sport. For example, runners focus on building the fundamental movement levels needed to be able to run competitively. Swimmers would need to train and build the fundamental movements needed for a different part of the body. Preparation to compete must address both cardio endurance and muscle endurance in specific muscle areas that will be used while training and competing athletically.

Running in marathons requires a higher level of consistent, supported movement compared to volleyball, racquetball or even weight lifting. Most sports utilize a variety of training such as cardios, aerobics, plyometrics and strength training to build endurance. Trainers consider the muscle groups that need to be developed, strengthened and maintained and work with athletes on techniques to be able to increase the ability to endure longer and to develop the strength they need to compete competitively.

5 Tips To Help You Prepare For Endurance Training

  1. Assessing the individual athlete: Before beginning any training program it is important to assess the athlete’s body as far as the strength, agility and endurance they have and what their BMI is in order to know if additional training needs to be added to the endurance training before the endurance training can reach optimal results which may also include calculating the optimal heart rate that the athlete can reach in order to have optimal performance.
  2. Endurance testing: Coaches and Trainers will assess the athlete’s endurance level depending on the sport they are competing in. For example, a football player may be tested with 20, 30 or 40 yards whereas, a runner may be tested for endurance with 1 mile. In addition, resting heart rate may be assessed depending on the athlete’s endurance necessities.
  3. Determine the type of endurance training needed: After testing the athlete, a plan needs to be developed for each individual athlete based on their current endurance level (pre-training fitness level) at the time of endurance testing. The assessment will help the trainer to determine the type and length of training needed in order to enhance the endurance level of the athlete.
  4. Exercises to develop optimal endurance levels:The endurance trainer will begin training the athlete based on the skills they need to develop for example, a runner may only be able to run ¼ mile in 30 minutes so, they will need to start training on the muscle groups associated with running quicker and cardios to be able to endure longer with a short term goal and a long term goal. These exercises need to be carefully thought out and evaluated on a regular basis in order to avoid endurance training overload which may bring harm to the athlete. The athlete needs to be assessed at set times to keep track of progress.
  5. Seasonal Training Goals and Plan: The trainer will give the athlete a schedule of what will be expected both in season and off season in order to improve endurance during the season and maintain endurance building activities in the off season.

What makes interval training a vital part of endurance training?

A way to improve an athlete’s cardiovascular fitness is through interval training. Interval training consists of alternating high intensity to low intensity parts of the workout or training session. It improves speed and cardiovascular fitness by combining high intensity periods with anaerobic programs with low intensity periods for recovery. This helps improve the athlete’s capability to perform and exercise longer at varying intensities. It also improves the lactate threshold of one’s body that enhances their capability in running long distance events.

Another plus factor is that it is not only for athletes, but also for those who want to effectively lose weight. The high intensity intervals incorporate metabolism-boosting activities and is sometimes more effective than the consistent training at moderate intensity.

It is necessary to build up stamina and maintain a regular training exercise routing during the first training sessions. Doing so helps develop a cardiovascular fitness level that can be built upon. At this point, you can add interval training at different threshold levels based on the advancement levels of individuals or the team as a whole.

Sports Utilizing Interval Training

Interval training is used in different sports which include basketball, baseball, softball, running, soccer, football, and boxing among others. The type of interval training depends on the fitness level of an athlete and needs to be tailored according to the sport or achievement goal of the athlete. All this in order to develop muscles that will be used and the endurance level in a particular sport.

Types of Interval Training

Shuttle runs – athletes line up and sprint to various marked lines or cones then bend down touching the line then return to the starting line. From here they then go back to another marked line, touching the line then returning to the starting line. Other types of shuttle runs may include running to a marked distance and back to the starting line. Distances may vary from 5 -yards to 20-yards, mid-field, and vice versa. Again, this type of program will be tailored to the fitness level of an athlete by the trainer or coach.
Sprints – includes running short distances from part of the court or field, running for 2 minutes, jogging for 30 seconds, and alternating between running, jogging, and walking with varying duration.
Swimming aerobics– contains a variety of exercises such as running, kicking, scissors, walking, rocking, and jumping among others. The goal is to have a 15-set exercises and repeat until the muscles are fatigued. During this training make sure that the core is stabilized and the form is correct. If something causes too much pain, discontinue activity as it might cause injury. Always, “listen to your body”.

Interval training comes in different forms. Interval training helps build the fundamental skills needed by the athlete in order to prepare for variables such as speed, agility, and endurance. These variables will help the athlete in optimizing performance and reducing the risk of injury.