OPTIMIZING PHYSIOLOGICAL AND PERFORMANCE OUTCOMES USING RECOVERY STRATEGIES AMONG JUNIOR CYCLISTS
Keywords:Junior cyclists, reduced training workload, exercise performance
Journal of Sports Science and Physical Education 2(1 ): 1–10, 2014 - The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of a two week reduction in training load on selected physiological and performance among junior cyclist. Twenty seven male junior cyclists (age= 16.6±0.7 years, height=165.6±6.1 cm, weight= 54.1±8.1 kg) were matched into either the control group (n=13) or the experimental group (n=14) using their initial VO2max values. Both groups followed a 12-week progressive endurance training program and subsequently, the experimental group (EXP) engaged in a two week tapering (recovery via a reduction in training loads) phase. The control group continued with their normal training routine. A simulated 20 km time trials performance and a graded exercise test on cycle ergometer were performed before and after endurance training and after the two week tapering protocol. Following the conclusion of the two week intervention or no intervention program both groups undertook a TT20km. Results showed no significant difference in the TT20km performance. Compared to the CON group, the EXP group showed significant changes in all the selected physiological variables tested, p<0.05. We conclude that a reduction in training loads can enhance recovery and benefit subsequent exercise sessions and competitions.
Keywords: Junior cyclists, reduced training workload, exercise performance