Aerobic training specifically targets the aerobic energy system and the cardiovascular system, which improves the delivery of oxygen to enhance its use. Aerobic training should be done at least 3 times a week, at an intensity between 70% and 80% of their maximum heart rate, and normally goes for 30+min in duration. Aerobic training is suited for all sports as it provides the base work for an athlete’s fitness. This is because it is the training that will specifically develop the cardiovascular system, and because the delivery of oxygen is vital in the recovery of each energy system. There are specific sports that aerobic training is the best suited for and these include: marathons, triathlons, long distance cycling such as the Tour de France, Iron Man events, cross-country skiing, and Australian Rules Football. This type of training affects performance by increasing the delivery of oxygen to the muscles, improving removal of waste products for all energy systems and enhancing the muscles ability to use the aerobic energy system. These improvements allow the athlete to perform at higher workloads for longer, because they become a lower intensity for the trained athlete. This training will also improve the recovery time for the lactic acid energy system. There are various training methods that can be utilised in this training type, which include: Fartlek, aerobic interval, circuit.
Continuous or uniform training is when the athlete performs the same activity at the same intensity for a specified duration of time, such as 30 min. Examples of this training method include going for a run at a set speed on a flat track, or riding an exercise bike at a set intensity. The identifiable factor for this method is that the intensity and activity does not change. Continuous training is best suited for sports where the intensity does not change very much and the same activity is repeated throughout the competition. These include sports such as: long distance rowing, marathon running, long distance swimming, and long distance indoor cycling because it more closely replicates the sport (specificity).
Fartlek training is a when the athlete participates in a singular activity with random varying intensities. This could be going for a run where the speed varies from a walk at 4km/h to a sprint at 20km/h and then slows down to 10km/h before going back up to 14km/h. each intensity could go for the same length of time, or vary. Alternatively, the intensity of the run could change by altering the incline or decline. The athlete could run at 12km/h the entire session, but change their incline from 20 to 80 and then down to 00. However the changed in intensity must vary multiple times. Fartlek is best suited for sports that have frequent random changes in intensity. These include sports such as: soccer, Australian Rules Football, cross-country running, outdoor long distance cycling, and grass hockey because it more closely replicates the sport (specificity).
Aerobic/Long Interval training involves a single activity with specified changes in intensity at specific times or lengths within the session. These changes will alternate between two set intensities and generally have a longer duration or length at the higher intensity than at the lower intensity. This method of training could be running 1500m at 80% and then jogging 400m at 40%. This would then be repeated a set number of times, which for this example could be 5 times. Another example might be to have the athlete ride an exercise bike for 9 min at 75%, then switch to 50% for 1 min repeated 6 times. Aerobic interval training is best suited for sports where there are extended periods of work, followed by a form of rest before further exertion is required. These include sports such as: basketball, netball, and biathlon (cross country skiing and rifle shooting) because it more closely replicates the sport (specificity).
Circuit training is various activities that are normally done for a set time before moving on to the next activity. Intensity during circuit training can vary or stay the same. Circuit training can be used for multiple types of training, but the syllabus focus is on aerobic training. For the circuit to be aerobic, it needs focus on aerobic activities, NOT strength, flexibility, anaerobic systems or anything else. This might look like 5 min on a bike at 70%, swimming for 5 min at 75%, cross-trainer for 5 min at 80%, and 5 min on a rower at 75%. Circuit training is best suited for sports, which have multiple types of activity. These include sports such as: summer and winter triathlons, Iron Man, and summer and winter quadrathlons because it more closely replicates the sport (specificity).