Muscular Endurance

Muscular Endurance2017-05-25T06:54:41+10:00

Muscular endurance is a muscle’s, or group of muscles’, ability to repeat a specific movement over and over again. It is often measured by testing how many times an athlete can perform a specific movement in a set time, for example, how many push-ups or sit-ups can be done in 1 minute. Muscular endurance is linked with the lactic acid energy system (you will cover this in HSC PDHPE). Pushing muscular endurance to its limits usually results in a burning sensation caused by the acid build up in the muscle.

You need to make sure you differentiate between muscular strength and muscular endurance. Muscular endurance has repeated sub-maximal muscular contractions (more tham 1). In contrast muscular strength  only has one contraction done maximally.

Muscular endurance testing is often done by repeating a specific movement over specified time, or until fatigued (but usually at a reasonable pace). An athletes muscular endurance will predict performance well in a sport that requires muscular endurance. For example, measuring an 800m runners upper leg (thigh and hamstring) muscular endurance will be a fairly good predictor of their performance in the 800 m race. However, it will not be a great predictor for a marathon as this relies more heavily on cardiorespiratory endurance. As always, the more varied the sport, the less accurate the prediction. So for boxing muscular endurance testing of the chest might be a good predictor of energy levels or intensity throughout the match, but it will not predict performance well, as boxing also requires hand-eye coordination, as well as anticipation, reading of body language and good technique, just to name a few key variables.

As with many of the health-related components of fitness, testing is often done and used to set a baseline that must be met by the athlete before skill-related components of fitness are developed along with technique, and other aspects. So for example, while not a great predictor of the boxers performance, it will relate to his performance and he will need to have good muscular endurance in order to perform well over the rounds of the bout. So the trainer may still make the boxer do plenty of testing to monitor the athlete and ensure they have their basic fitness levels required for the athelte’s specific level of performance.