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athletes, cycling, willock, plaxton

Race and Competition Demands

How to Prep Your Training to Help Improve Performance

by: Houshang Amiri

June 29, 2014

An analysis and understanding of race demands along with suitable preparation and training, will improve your performance and bring positive changes to the outcome of your race.

Consider your next important race, think of any specific demands of the race and create a list of factors that could impact your performance.

Many races and competitions require different components and levels of performance, and so training needs to reflect what these components would be. Consequently, identifying and understanding the demands of a race can help the coach and rider to specify goals in response to race demands and then prescribe appropriate training.

Identifying as many different types of demands, including all of the factors, are important and can maximize your performance.

Factors can be listed under these categories: 

  • Technical
  • Tactical
  • Physiological
  • Psychological
  • Nutritional
  • Biomechanical
  • Mechanical/equipment
  • Environmental   
  • Logistical  
  • Recovery   

Race demands can be measured or observed, and they can be categorized for a particular type of race. For example, if the above list relates to track sprint we may add the sub categories as follow:

  • Technical: start gate, timing and balance
  • Tactical: choosing the line, considering the wind direction, indoor vs outdoor track
  • Physiological: muscular power and agility
  • Psychological: activation, focus
  • Nutritional: strategy for refuelling between the heats 
  • Biomechanical: double disc wheel vs rear disc or no disc wheel - indoor vs outdoor track
  • Mechanical/equipment: gear selection
  • Environmental: hot, cold, altitude, wind
  • Logistical: travel, transportation
  • Recovery: jet leg, recovery from each day  



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