A recent study has concluded that those involved in team sports are able to receive benefits when it comes to both endurance and power, similar to that of road cyclists and long-distance runners, along with sprinters and bodybuilders.
The research, undertaken by researchers at the Manchester Metropolitan University, looked into the relationship between team sport players and their training methods, attributing the combination of strength and endurance. With three different groups of male athletes having taken part in the study, all coming from the Lithuanian Sports University in Kaunus, 87 were involved in endurance sports, while 77 took part in power sports. Meanwhile, the final group, comprising of 64 athletes, participated in team sports such as football and basketball.
With a participant age range of between 17-37 years, endurance sports included road cycling, skiing and long-distance running, whilst power sports included sprinting, bodybuilding and field athletic throwing events. The study involved testing the muscle power, aerobic endurance and maximum vertical jump height, with Professor Hans Degens concluding that the “study shows team athletes actually have the best of both and that is a fantastic observation. We did not expect to find that.”
Further conclusions stated that both endurance training for power athletes and power training for endurance athletes is certainly not detrimental. This is especially interesting when it comes to the bodybuilders involved, who were wrong in their assumptions that participating in endurance training would lead to loss in muscle mass.
Looking at things in a physiological way, those carrying out physical activity must employ a certain amount of muscle for a particular movement, however those who are able to utilise a smaller proportion of that muscle to do the same amount of work will be able to delay the onset of fatigue, as well as potentially performing the movement at a higher speed.
There are regularly theories introduced as to just how people can increase their longevity, whether it be diet, rest or workload. However, recent research has shown the participating in team sports can add years to your life, adding yet another positive to this form of exercise.
While skill, dedication and physical attributes are of key importance when it comes to reaching the top of the sporting ladder, there are certainly other factors that are often not discussed, including when athletes were born.