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64 Ansichten11 SeitenQuantifying Workloads in Resistance Training

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64 Ansichten11 SeitenQuantifying Workloads in Resistance Training

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Quantifying Workloads in

Resistance Training: A

Brief Review

G. Gregory Haff, Ph.D., C.S.C.S.*D, ASCC, FNSCA

Summary

The ability to quantify training loads and volumes is of particular

importance when working with periodised training plans. The ability to

plan and monitor resistance training loads allows the strength and

conditioning professional the ability to modulate training stressors and

better manage fatigue which ultimately leads to a greater potential that

performance is optimized. In order to better understand the methods

available for monitoring resistance training variables, the present review is

designed to explore the various methods for quantifying training volumes

and intensities used in the design and monitoring of resistance training

programs.

Introduction

Dr. Greg Haff is an associate When designing and implementing a periodised training plan the ability to

professor in the Division of manage training stressors is an influential factor in determining the overall

effectiveness of the training interventions.3,29 Through the modulation of

Exercise Physiology at the West

training stressors, a periodised training plan can enhance the recovery

Virginia University School of adaptation process which will result in a dissipation of fatigue in concert

Medicine. He has published with an elevation of preparedness, and ultimately, performance capacity at

numerous research articles on predetermined time points. The accomplishment of these goals is

sport science related topics and dependent on the ability of the coach to estimate and evaluate the

has been recognised by the workloads accomplished in the various aspects of the training plan. This

National Strength and Conditioning ability allows the coach to appropriately sequence and integrate all of the

Association as the Young athlete’s training stressors. If these factors are not considered and/or

Investigator of the Year in 2001. In monitored, the likelihood that the training programme will result in less

than optimal results will increase markedly.

2008 Dr. Haff received the

Distinguished Teaching Faculty Depending upon the sport, there are several distinct components of the

training plan including technical, tactical, metabolic conditioning, sprint

Award at the West Virginia

agility, endurance and resistance training. The ability to estimate or

University School of Medicine. Dr.

directly calculate the training loads of each of these training factors allows

Haff has served as a strength and for a better understanding of the workload encountered by the athlete and

conditioning consultant for Team can give keen insight into the fatigue factors generated by the training

Arrow a Collegiate Cycling Team, plan. Of particular importance is the ability to estimate the amount of

Canadian Track Cycling champion work that the athlete completes during the resistance training component

Mark Ernsting, and several other of the overall training plan.19 Generally, the volume of resistance training

national and international level performed is considered to be indicative of the work performed and

athletes. Dr. Haff is a Fellow of The proportional to the caloric expenditure that is accomplished in the training

session, day or training cycle. Mathematically, the amount of mechanical

NSCA, a former NSCA board

work accomplished can be calculated by multiplying the force by the

member, a Regional Level

displacement during the resistance training exercise performed. For

Weightlifting Coach, and a Level 3 example, if an athlete were to perform 5 repetitions of the back squat

Cycling Coach. with 150 kg and were to move through a vertical distance of 0.6 m, the

work accomplished would be calculated with the following equation:

Work = weight (kg) x vertical displacement (m) x number of repetitions

Work = 150 kg x 0.6 m x 5 = 450 kg·m-1 = 4413.0 J = 1.051 kcal

In this example, the athlete would have accomplished 450 kg·m-1 or

4413.0 J of work during the performance of this exercise. When this

information is determined for an exercise or training session, it allows the

strength and conditioning professional to gain an understanding about the

amount of work or caloric expenditure accomplished.27 Generally, it is

impractical and virtually impossible to measure the displacement

accomplished for each repetition of every exercise undertaken in a

© UKSCA | Issue 19 | Autumn 2010 w: www.uksca.org.uk e: info@uksca.org.uk 31

resistance training programme. However, the ability to Therefore, it is generally accepted that while the repetition

directly estimate or quantify workloads in the method is very simple to calculate, it offers a poor

resistance training environment appears to be on the estimate of the amount of work or volume of training

horizon. Emerging technologies such as accelerometers completed in a resistance training bout or training

and linear position transducers may offer a mechanism programme.3,27 Even though this method is a poor method

for directly quantifying the work accomplished by for estimating or quantifying the training volume and

allowing for the assessment of vertical displacements, workload, it has continued to be used by several

which can then be used in conjunction with the training researchers who are exploring various resistance training

load and volumes to create a more reasonable models24,25 and practitioners who work directly with

estimate of workload and potentially caloric athletes. A more accurate approach would be to either

expenditure. directly quantify work accomplished,19 or use estimates

While a direct assessment or calculation of work gives which account for the actual weight lifted by the athlete27

valuable information to the strength and conditioning when attempting to either quantify or equate training

professional at this time, it may be impractical to loads when comparing various training interventions.

directly calculate it, especially when working with large Volume Load: In an attempt to better estimate the

groups of athletes. Therefore, the primary purpose of workload that is encountered in a resistance training

this brief review is to explore the various methods for setting, the volume load is generally calculated.3,19,27,30

estimating the training volume and intensity in This estimate of workload expands upon the repetition

resistance training. These methods may be used as method for determining volume or workload by

part of the training programme design process or the accounting for the weight lifted during the resistance

athlete monitoring process in order to give the strength training exercise or session.

and conditioning professional or sports scientist Typically the volume of training is reported as a metric

information about the resistance training stressors ton,1,3,9 a short ton,2 or the volume load.3,27 Where

encountered by the athlete. This may in turn allow for volume load is reported as a kilogramme value, while a

a better management of fatigue, which can increase metric ton is equivalent to 1,000 kg and a short ton is

the potential for optimising performance at predictable 1,102.3 kg. To calculate either the metric ton or short

pre-determined time points. ton, one must first calculate the volume load and then

divide by either 1000kg to get a metric ton or 1,102.3

Methods for Estimating Training to get a short ton (Table 1).

Volume In order to calculate the volume load there are two

distinct methods which can be performed, one equation

When examining the periodisation literature, there are

which utilises the absolute load lifted and one equation

three main methods that can be used for the

which utilises the percentage of 1-repetiton maximum

estimation of training volume in resistance training:

(% 1-RM).3,9 The first equation for calculating the

1) determination of total repetitions completed10, volume load is accomplished by multiplying the number

2) calculation of the volume load3,9,27, and of repetitions completed in an exercise by the actual

3) calculation of the volume index.1 resistance encountered. This equation can be

Repetition Method: The most basic method for represented as the following:

quantifying the volume of resistance training and Equation 1: Volume load (kg) = number of sets x

estimating the work accomplished, is the calculation of number of repetitions x weight lifted (kg)

the total repetitions that have been completed in an If, for example, an individual were to perform 3 sets of

exercise, during a training session or training cycle. 10 repetitions in the back squat at 150 kg, the

Based upon this method of determining work, 3 sets of calculation would be performed with Equation 1 as

10 repetitions would result in the same amount of total follows:

repetitions as 10 sets of 3 repetitions. While both

loading paradigms result in 30 total repetitions, the Volume load (kg) = 3 x 10 x 150 kg = 4500 kg

two protocols would actually result in vastly different The second equation for calculating the volume load is

amounts of total work or physiological stress. This accomplished by multiplying the number of repetitions

contention is supported by a recent study by McCaulley by the percentage of 1-RM.9 This equation is

et al.20 in which various repetitions and set schemes represented as the following:

had their mechanical work equated in order to quantify Equation 2: Volume load (kg) = number of sets x

the physiological responses to each loading structure. number of repetitions x %1RM

In order to equate the mechanical work accomplished Another way of looking at this equation would be to

with 4 sets of 10 repetitions performed at 75% of 1 consider the percentage as a factor of 100 kg. For

repetition maximum (1-RM) (work = 84.2 ± 8.5 J x 10- example, if the athlete were to lift at 67% of their

3

), a total of 11 sets of 3 repetitions were performed at maximal capacity, the %1RM number would be

90% of 1-RM (work = 84.2 ± 19.7 J x 10-3). Careful represented as 67 kg. Therefore, if the same individual

inspection of this data reveals that one loading as presented above performed the back squat for 3

structure resulted in 40 total repetitions, while the sets of 10 repetitions at 150 kg and this load

other resulted in 33 repetitions even though both represented 67% of their 1-RM, the calculation would

structures resulted in similar work outputs. be performed with Equation 2 as follows:

Additionally, each protocol resulted in vastly different

Volume Load (kg) = 3 x 10 x 67 = 2010 kg

hormonal profiles, suggesting that even though the

volume of work was equated, the physiological stress Once this factor is calculated, it can then be quantified

encountered was very different. The differentiating in terms of the actual maximum capacity for the

factor appears to be the load encountered, thus the exercise. For example if the athlete’s maximum back

best estimate of volume or workload must consider the squat is 200 kg then the individualised volume load

amount of weight lifted and not simply rely on the total would be calculated as follows:

repetitions completed. Volume Load (kg) = 3 x 10 x (200 x 0.67) = 4020 kg

32 © UKSCA | Issue 19 | Autumn 2010 w: www.uksca.org.uk e: info@uksca.org.uk

Table 1: Methods of Volume Conversions

Exercise Sets Repetitions Load Volume Load Metric Ton Short Ton

(kg) (kg)

Power Snatch 3 5 100 1500 1.500 1.367

Snatch Pull (from floor) 3 5 120 1800 1.800 1.633

Snatch Pull (from knee) 3 5 130 1815 1.815 1.647

Snatch Grip RDL 3 5 90 1350 1.350 1.225

Training day totals= 6465 6.465 5.865

Note: to get metric ton divides the volume load by 1000. To get the short ton divide the volume load by 1102.3.

Volume Load Calculation Volume Index **

Exercise Sets Repetitions Load % Total Equation 1 Equation 2 Equation 4 Equation 5

(kg) 1RM Repetitions (kg) (kg)

Back Squat 3 10 150 67 30 4500 2010 45 205.7

¼ Back Squat 3 10 180 60 30 5400 1800 54 246.8

1-Leg Squat 3 10 50 22* 30 1500 660 15 68.6

Behind Neck Press 3 10 60 50 30 3000 1500 18 82.3

Training day totals= 120 14400 5970 132 603.4

Note: *= the 1-leg squat was calculated as a percent of the 1-RM back squat. Based upon a 1-RM back squat of 225 kg and the athlete weighs

100 kg

** = note the volume index calculations are based off of the volume load calculated with equation 1.

Equation 1: sets x repetitions x load (kg)

Equation 2: sets x repetitions x %1RM

Equation 4:sets x repetitions x load/body mass (kg)

Equation 5:sets x repetitions x load/body mass (kg)0.67

Another approach would be to calculate the a potential error in the estimation of workloads

individualised volume load by multiplying the estimate completed during a resistance training bout. It is

calculated with Equation 2 by a factor of 2. This factor possible that there could be an under or overestimation

is selected because the maximum capacity in the lift is of workload depending upon the exercise being

2 times greater than the 100 kg factor used in the performed.5,30 For example, when looking at Table 2,

estimation. the back squat resulted in a volume load of 4500 kg

When comparing the two volume load equation, it is (Equation 1), while the ¼ back squat resulted in 5400

important to note that they results in very different kg (Equation 1). Clearly the ¼ squat required the

estimates of workload (Table 2). For example, when movement of a larger load and thus this accounted for

examining Table 2, it is clear that method 2 the higher volume load estimate. However, this is likely

consistently results in lower volume load estimates an overestimation of the work performed because the

when compared to method 1 if it is not modified in the distance traveled is significantly less in a ¼ squat than

context of the maximum capacity. This poses a in a full back squat. Typically the ¼ squat is performed

significant issue if the method for calculating volume by lifting the barbell from blocks which decreases the

distance the barbell travels when compared to a full

load is not specifically addressed in the methods of

squat. In this instance, Equation 2 for calculating

research articles or reviews of literature on training.

volume load may be a better method of estimating

Therefore, it is imperative that the method for

workload because the percentage of 1-RM is relative to

calculating volume load is clearly outlined. It may be

the lift being performed. For example, the back squat

useful to use method 2 as a planning tool when writing

would have a volume load of 2010 kg, while the ¼

a training plan because it allows one to work with

squat would result a volume load of 1800 kg. While

percentages9 and then use method 1 as a monitoring

method 2 creates a value that better represents the

tool to see what the athlete actually accomplished.3

workload because it is tied to the 1-RM of each

Even though the calculation of volume load does not exercise, it is limited because it most likely

typically include a measure of distance traveled during underestimates the actual workload performed. Ideally,

the exercise it should be considered a reasonable it would be best if the actual distance traveled during

estimate of workload.27 Support for this contention can each exercise was quantified and yielding a more

be found in the work of McBride et al.19 where various accurate method of estimating workload.

methods of determining the volume of resistance Because the volume load is significantly affected by the

training were assessed and the volume load equation distance the bar travels it may be warranted to re-write

(Equation 1) resulted in a reasonable estimate of work. the volume equation to the following:

It is important to note that when comparing the

Equation 3: Volume load (kg·m-1) = sets x repetitions x

volume load of an exercise to a direct calculation of

load (kg) x distance (m)

work performed that the distance the barbell travels

will significantly impact the amount of work performed. If the distance traveled by the barbell were determined

As a result, the volume load estimate may result in an for each exercise the athlete performs, this volume

underestimation or overestimation of the workload load equation would give a better depiction of the

accomplished depending upon the exercise performed. overall training loads encountered.

The fact that the distance the bar travels is not Bosoc4,6 suggests that the ultimate quantification of

considered in either volume load calculation can create training loads would require the direct monitoring of

© UKSCA | Issue 19 | Autumn 2010 w: www.uksca.org.uk e: info@uksca.org.uk 33

the dynamics of the lifting task including displacement, research studies, as well as example training

force, velocity, and power characteristics. There are programmes, should at least report the basic volume

several methods that can be used in this task including load estimate as it is still a better representation than

the use of the V-Scope,13,15 force plate-linear position only reporting the number of repetitions performed.

transducer systems,7,20 video analysis12,26 and potentially This practice should be encouraged because it gives a

accelerometers. Many of these devices, such as the more accurate picture of what is planned for or has

force-plate linear position transducer and video been accomplished in the training session.

analysis systems are used in research settings but Volume Index: When looking at the volume load

have not typically been used in the applied settings of estimate of work, it does not account for the athlete’s

coaching because of their cost and the time size, which may significantly impact the amount of

commitment necessary for collecting and analysing work the athlete has performed. Depending upon the

data. athlete’s size, the amount of work that is actually

In the applied setting, the training environment performed can vary significantly. One method for

requires instantaneous feedback, portability, and accounting for an athlete’s size in the calculation of

relative ease of use.26 In the early 1990’s, there was an volume is the calculation of what has been termed the

attempt to address this need with the development of volume index.1 The volume index calculation method

the V-Scope weightlifting analysis system. This system results in significantly different estimates of workload

was designed as a coaching tool in order to provide when compared to the traditional volume load

instantaneous information about a lift, but because of calculations (Table 2). There are several potential

the need for multiple devices when working with large methods or equations for calculating the volume index

teams and the corresponding cost of the device, its which can be used when attempting to evaluate the

application did not become popular. volume of training.

More recently, the development of accelerometer The first equation that can be used to normalise the

technologies may result in a monitoring break through volume load to body mass is to divide this volume load

which will allow for the direct quantification of training by the athlete’s body mass (Equation 4)1:

workloads.26 Sato et al.26 recently reported the validity Equation 4: Volume index =

of the acceleration measures determined during a high

(sets x repetitions x load (kg)) = Volume load (kg)

pull. However, no data was reported on the ability of

the system to quantify displacements, and further Body mass (kg) Body mass (kg)

scientific inquiry is required in order to verify the ability If, for example, a 100 kg athlete were to perform 3

of the accelerometer to measure displacements and sets of 10 repetitions with 150 kg the equation would

ultimate quantify workloads. If accelerometer be formatted as follows:

technologies are proven by future scientific inquiry to Volume index =

be both accurate and valid with the quantification of

displacement they will unlock an ability to better grasp (3 x 10 x 150) 4500 = 45

=

the workloads accomplished in the resistance training 100 100

environment.

If, for example this athlete were to lose 2 kilogrammes

One potential alternative to high tech devices would be (body mass = 98 kg) and perform the same workout,

to actually measure the displacement of specific the volume index would be able to address this

exercises with a tape measure and place this rough change:

estimate into Equation 3 when attempting to calculate

Volume index =

the volume load.8 This rudimentary method for

calculating displacement expands upon the basic (3 x 10 x 150) 4500 = 46

=

volume load calculation but contains one potential 98 98

confounding factor. Specifically it assumes that the

The basic assumption that is made when dividing the

displacement is consistent between each repetition of a

weight lifted by body mass is that strength levels are

set or across a loading spectrum. The fact that the

proportional to body mass and how that muscle mass

displacement may change across a set for a specific

is distributed.11 However, it has been recently

exercise is supported by work by Haff et al.13 In this

suggested that to normalise strength measures,

study it was determined that the vertical displacement

allometric scaling needs to be employed.11,16,17 The

varied across a set of 5 repetitions at both 90% and

principle of geometric scaling serves as the foundation

120% of the 1 repetition maximum power clean during

for the concept of allometric scaling, which suggests

the performance of a clean pull. Therefore, while a

that the load lifted should be divided by some variable

basic measure of displacement improves upon the

related to body size. This effectively will remove the

basic volume load calculation, a more accurate

effect body mass on the training load.16 The most

approach would be to have a method or technology

common methods for normalising is divide the force by

which measure displacement for each repetition of

body mass to the 2/3 power.

every set.

Therefore, the next equation that can be used when

While the volume load is generally a useful tool for

attempting to normalise the volume load would utilise

quantifying work encountered by the athlete during

an allomterically scaled force value (Equation 5) and be

resistance training, the inclusion of displacement in the

calculated with the following formula:

equation may be necessary to maximize the accuracy

Equation 5: Volume index =

of the estimation. Additionally, when looking at power

exercises, the volume load without the inclusion of (sets x repetitions x load (kg)) = Volume load (kg)

vertical displacement may underestimate the workload Body mass (kg)0.67 Body mass (kg)0.67

accomplished during the exercise19 while partial

movements may result in an overestimation of work If, the athlete described above was 170 cm tall and

accomplished. Even with these potential limitations, weighed 100 kg and performed 3 sets of 10 repetitions

34 © UKSCA | Issue 19 | Autumn 2010 w: www.uksca.org.uk e: info@uksca.org.uk

Table 3: Comparison of Method for Calculating Training Intensity

Warm-up Sets Target Sets Volume Load Training Intensity

Method Exercise Set 1 Set 2 Set 3 Set 4 Set 5 Set 6 Total Target Sets Total Target Sets

% 1-RM Back Squat 30 45 55 60 60 60 1550 900 52 60

5 5 5 5 5

Kilogram Back Squat 67.5 101 124 135 135 135 3488 2025 116 135

5 5 5 5 5

Note: 60 = % 1-Repetition Maximum , percentages are based off of a 225 kg back squat maximum. %1-RM = percentage of 1 repetition maximum.

5 Repetitions

at 150 kg, the normalised volume index would be as considered when attempting to evaluate training

follows: workloads.

Volume index =

(3 x 10 x 150 (kg)) = 4500 (kg) = 205.7

Methods for Quantifying Training

100 (kg)0.67 21.9 (kg)0.67 Intensity

If the athlete then lost 2 kg and performed the exact The ability to represent the training intensity of an

same workout, the volume index would be: exercise or training bout is essential when evaluating a

training plan. When examining the periodisation

Volume index =

literature it is clear that there is a distinct interplay

(3 x 10 x 150 (kg)) = 4500 (kg) = 208.5 between the volume of training and the intensity of the

98 (kg)0.67 21.69 (kg)0.67 training bouts encountered.3,14,18,21,22

By allometrically scaling the body mass and then Traditionally there are two methods which can be used

calculating the volume index the coach is able to to quantify intensity during a training session:

compare the training loads encountered by athletes of 1) the training intensity, and

different sizes and effectively monitor the training

2) the intensity index.

stressors encountered as the athlete’s body weight

changes. Ideally, this estimation would be stronger if Training Intensity: Training intensity is considered as

the volume load calculated was based upon the actual the average kilogrammes lifted for an individual

distance traveled by the bar during the lift. This would exercise or overall training session. Typically this

be accomplished with the following equation: estimate of intensity is calculated as follows:

Equation 6: Volume index = Equation 7: Exercise intensity = Volume load

(sets x reps x load (kg) x distance (m)) = Volume load (kg) Repetitions

0.67 0.67

Body mass (kg) Body mass (kg)

For example, if an athlete were to perform three sets

If, for example, the same lifter above moved the of 5 repetitions at 135 kilograms the volume load could

barbell a total of 0.6 m during the back squat be calculated with Equation 1 yielding a volume load of

performed in the previous example, the volume load 2025 kg and plugged into Equation 7 as follows:

equation would be calculated as follows: Exercise intensity =

Volume index = 2025 kg = 2025 kg = 135 kg

(3 x 10 x 150 (kg) x 0.6 (m)) = (2700 kg·m-1) = 124.5 Total Repetitions 15

98 (kg)0.67 21.69 (kg)0.67

If the calculation was performed based upon the

Comparing the results of the volume load calculated percentage of 1-repetition maximum (RM) method,

with Equations 5 and 6 reveals a slightly different then volume load would be calculated with the use of

workload value for this exercise. This small difference Equation 2 and the volume load determined would then

in the quantification of work for an individual exercise be plugged into Equation 7. If the athlete, in this

can be meaningful when a total training session’s example, had a maximum back squat of 225 kg, the

volume load is calculated and, therefore, should be target loads of 135 kg would represent 60% of their 1-

Table 4. Example calculation of volume load and training intensity for a workout.

Method 1 Method 2

Load % Total Volume Training Volume Training

Exercise Sets Repetitions (kg) 1RM Repetitions Load Intensity Load Intensity

Equation 1 (kg) (kg) Equation 2 (kg) kg

Back Squat 3 10 150 67 30 4500 150 2010 67

¼ Back Squat 3 10 180 60 30 5400 180 1800 60

1-Leg Squat 3 10 50 22* 30 1500 50 660 22

Behind Neck Press 3 10 60 50 30 3000 60 1500 50

Training day totals= 120 14400 110 5970 50

Note: *= the 1-leg squat was calculated as a percent of the 1-RM back squat. Based upon a 1-RM back squat of 225 kg and the athlete weighs

100 kg

** = note the volume index calculations are based off of the volume load calculated with equation 1.

Equation 1: sets x repetitions x load (kg)

Equation 2: sets x repetitions x %1RM

Method 1: uses Equation 1 in the calculation of volume load

Method 2: uses Equation 2 in the calculation of volume load

© UKSCA | Issue 19 | Autumn 2010 w: www.uksca.org.uk e: info@uksca.org.uk 35

RM and Equation 7 would be as

follows:

Exercise intensity =

Intensity

Training

(kg)

116

137

900 kg = 900 kg = 60 kg

88

15

30

Total

Total Repetitions 15

If you examine Table 3 closely, it is

Volume

3475

4100

2650

Load

(kg)

225

450

clear that when the training load is

held constant at the target sets, the

kilogrammes lifted or the %1-RM

and Training Intensity

Intensity

Total Volume Load

Training

(kg)

However, if the load fluctuates this will

145

170

100

15

30

Target Sets

not be the case. For example, looking

at the total workload, which includes

the warm-up sets the exercise intensity

Volume

2175

2550

1500

Load

is represented as either 52 or

(kg)

225

450

Table 5: Example of Examining the Volume Load and Training Intensity Based upon the Type of Exercise or Category of Exercise.

method of quantification.

The training intensity for individual

Intensity

Training

(kg)

103

87

77

an overall intensity for the training day

Warm-up

the athlete performed a basic 4

Volume

1300

1550

1150

Load

(kg)

After calculating the volume load the

training intensity for the day was

determined. It is important to note

by Exercise Classification

Total Volume Load

performed, and thus, smaller muscle

mass exercise will result in a decrease

in the average intensity for the

145

170

100

Set

15

30

training day.

5

5

6

Target Sets

145

170

100

Set

15

30

5

5

5

the warm-up, target sets and down

sets while examining the results based

145

170

100

Set

15

30

5

5

4

Table 5 there is a difference between

the total session volume load of

110

140

Set

90

5

5

3

load of 6900 kg. Additionally, the

Warm-up

110

Set

90

80

5

5

2

Total Volume Load

by Exercise Type

value as will combining auxiliary and

core exercise in the calculation. In this

Set

60

60

Power Clean 60

5

5

1

exercises is 10225 kg and the training

Back Squat

Front Raise

Bicep Curls

Push Press

Exercise

675 kg with a training intensity of

23 kg.

Regardless of how the training

intensity and volume load are sub-

divided, it is important that the

Strength

Strength

Exercise

Type of

Power

training intensity depicted in the

various aspects of the training session

(i.e. warm-up, target sets, down sets,

Core Exercises

conditioning professional can garner a

Exercises

Category

Auxiliary

Exercise

stressors encountered by the athlete.

36 © UKSCA | Issue 19 | Autumn 2010 w: www.uksca.org.uk e: info@uksca.org.uk

Table 6. Example calculation of volume index and intensity index for a workout.

Method 1 Method 2

Exercise Sets Repetitions Load % Total Equation 1 Equation 2 Equation 4 Equation 5

(kg) 1RM Repetitions (kg) (kg)

Back Squat 3 10 150 67 30 45 1.5 206 6.9

¼ Back Squat 3 10 180 60 30 54 1.8 247 8.2

1-Leg Squat 3 10 50 22* 30 15 0.5 69 2.3

Behind Neck Press 3 10 60 50 30 18 0.6 82 2.7

Training day totals/averages= 120 114 1.1 603 5.0

Note: *= the 1-leg squat was calculated as a percent of the 1-RM back squat. Based upon a 1-RM back squat of 225 kg and the athlete weighs

100 kg and is 170 cm tall.

Method 1: uses Equation 4 [sets x repetitions x load/body mass (kg)] to calculate volume index

Method 2: uses Equation 5 [sets x repetitions x load/body mass (kg)0.67] to calculate volume index

Table 7: Example use of Volume Load and Training Intensity Projections in the Planning Process.

Day Exercise Sets Reps Week 1 Week 2 Week 3 Week 4 Volume Load Training Intensity

Monday Squat 3 5 70 75 80 73 4470 75

Power Clean 3 5 70 75 80 73 4470 75

Bench Press 3 5 70 75 80 73 4470 75

Wednesday Power Snatch 3 5 65 70 75 63 4095 68

Snatch Pull (FL) 3 5 65 70 75 63 4095 68

Overhead Squat 3 5 65 70 75 63 4095 68

Friday Front Squat 3 5 60 65 70 63 3870 65

Power Clean 3 5 60 65 70 63 3870 65

Incline Bench Press 3 5 60 65 70 63 3870 65

method of representing the intensity of the training

bout or exercise.1 Typically, the intensity index is Volume and Training Intensity

calculated with the following equation:

The ability to accurately plan, track and monitor the

Equation 8: Intensity index = Volume index volume and intensity of the resistance training

Total repetitions programme allows for a better understanding of the

training stressors encountered by the athlete.

When employing this equation the volume index can be Specifically employing basic calculations allows the

calculated with either Equation 4 or 5 and then divided strength and conditioning professional the ability to

by the total number of repetitions performed in the more accurately determine the dosage of training and

various aspects of the training session. ensure that the athlete’s level of preparedness is

For example, looking at Table 6, it is clear that tracking in the appropriate direction. Conceptually, the

allometric scaling (method 2) alters the volume index, application of the materials presented in this brief

which in turn, alters the intensity index when review can be considered in the context of either the

compared to the more traditional method for planning or monitoring process.

computing both variables (method 1). With this Planning Training: When the strength and

method, the intensity index allows for the conditioning professional is designing the periodised

quantification of an intensity which accounts for body training plan it is important that he/she understands

size and shifts in body mass that can occur as a result the variations in the workloads and patterns of loading

of weight gain or weight loss, and thus, may have an contained in the various phases of their overall plan.

impact on training stressors.1 One method that can be used to accomplish this goal is

to use Equation 2 to project the volume loads of

© UKSCA | Issue 19 | Autumn 2010 w: www.uksca.org.uk e: info@uksca.org.uk 37

Table 8: Example Use of Volume Load and Training Intensity as a Monitoring Tool.

Day Exercise Sets Reps Week 1 Week 2 Week 3 Week 4 Volume Load Training Intensity

Monday Squat 3 5 154 165 176 161 9834 164

Power Clean 3 5 112 120 128 117 7152 119

Bench Press 3 5 95 101 108 99 6034.5 101

Wednesday Power Snatch 3 5 78 84 90 82 5004 83

Snatch Pull (FL) 3 5 85 91 97.5 88 5421 90

Overhead Squat 3 5 78 84 90 82 5004 83

Friday Front Squat 3 5 108 117 126 113 6966 116

Power Clean 3 5 96 104 112 101 6192 103

Incline Bench Press 3 5 72 78 84 76 4644 77

Notes: Based upon the following actual and estimated 1-repetition maximums: Back squat = 220, power clean = 160, bench press =135, power

snatch = 120, snatch pull = 130, overhead squat = 120, front squat=180; and incline bench press = 120.

Table 9: Example Use of Allomertically Scaled Volume Index and Training Index as a Monitoring Tool.

Day Exercise Sets Reps Week 1 Week 2 Week 3 Week 4 Volume Load Training Intensity

Monday Squat 3 5 104.1 111.4 118.3 108.7 442.6 7.4

Power Clean 3 5 75.7 81.0 86.0 79.1 321.9 5.4

Bench Press 3 5 63.9 68.4 72.6 66.7 271.6 4.5

Body Mass 102.1 102.3 103 101.9

Wednesday Power Snatch 3 5 53.1 57.2 60.9 55.4 226.5 3.8

Snatch Pull (FL) 3 5 57.5 62.0 65.9 60.0 245.3 4.1

Overhead Squat 3 5 53.1 57.2 60.9 55.4 226.5 3.8

Body Mass 101.2 101 102.1 101.6

Friday Front Squat 3 5 73.4 79.2 85.5 77.1 315.2 5.3

Power Clean 3 5 65.2 70.4 76.0 68.6 280.2 4.7

Incline Bench Press 3 5 48.9 52.8 57.0 51.4 210.1 3.5

Body Mass 101.4 102 101.5 101.2

Notes: Based upon the following actual and estimated 1-repetition maximums: Back squat = 220, power clean = 160, bench press =135, power

snatch = 120, snatch pull = 130, overhead squat = 120, front squat=180; and incline bench press = 120.

38 © UKSCA | Issue 19 | Autumn 2010 w: www.uksca.org.uk e: info@uksca.org.uk

training and Equation 7 to project the expect training

Figure 1: Example 3:1 Loading Paradigm.

intensity that will be encountered by the athlete. This

method can be especially useful when working with

large numbers of athletes as individualisation can occur

after the basic planning is completed.

For example, if a 4-week block of training was being

designed with a 3:1 loading paradigm, the basic volume

load and training intensity would increase across the

first 3 microcycles of training, and then, the 4

microcycle would represent an unloading week (Figure

1). The basic daily programme may look like the

example presented in Table 7. By using percentages of

the athlete’s 1-RM’s for each of the exercises planned, a

basic training intensity variation can be visualised

during the planning process. While this is only an

estimate of the intensities, it does give the strength and

conditioning professional a rough idea of what the

training load variation might be.

Looking at the basic structure of the mesocycle

presented in Figure 1 and Table 7, it is clear that a

classic model of periodisation has been structured

based upon the examples presented by Plisk and

Stone23 in the planning process. Careful inspection of

the example plan demonstrates daily and microcycle Figure 2: Example 3:1 Loading Paradigm Based upon

fluctuations in volume load and training intensities. Volume Load and Training Intensity Values From

Even though Figure 1 and Table 7 allow for the ability Actual Training Results.

to visualise the basic loading structures, it is important

to note that the actual accomplished work may be

slightly different depending upon the ability of the

athlete to complete the prescribed workloads and their

1-RM’s for each exercise.

Monitoring Training: From a monitoring perspective

the actual lifts completed and the kilogrammes lifted

should be used in the calculations of both volume load

and training intensity. Using the same basic exercises

and loading patterns as presented in planning training

section (Table 7) of this article could be completed by

an athlete. Based upon the number of repetitions

completed and the athletes maximal capacity in the lifts

planed, the basic 3:1 loading pattern was completed

(Figure 2). While this basic pattern is slightly different

than the one used in the planning process, it still

represents what the structural pattern established.

Further inspection of the training plan and results can

be done by looking at Table 8 where the actual weights

lifted are recorded. While it is highly unlikely that the

athlete will make every lift at a prescribed load for this Figure 3: Example 3:1 Loading Paradigm Based

example, let’s assume that they have. Based upon the upon Volume Index and Intensity Index Values

basic volume load and training intensity calculations we From Actual Training Results.

can see that daily and microcycle variations in volume

and intensity of training are created. However, the

exercise selected and the athlete’s maximal capacities

in these lifts, the Wednesday workout had a lower

volume and intensity then planned in Table 7.

Another potential method for monitoring the training

programme is to calculate the allometrically scaled

volume and intensity index (Table 9). Central to the

ability to employ this monitoring tool is the daily

determination of body weight. In this example, the

same programme as presented in Table 8 is re-analysed

with the use of the volume and intensity indexes. As

with the previous examples, a 3:1 loading paradigm has

been performed (Figure 3). Careful inspection reveals

that the basic loading pattern depicted in Table 8 is

only slightly altered when presented in the context of

the volume and intensity index values. The small

difference in loading patterns is largely a result of the

fact that the athlete in this example only demonstrated

© UKSCA | Issue 19 | Autumn 2010 w: www.uksca.org.uk e: info@uksca.org.uk 39

small changes in body weight across the block of 10. Fleck, S. and W.J. Kraemer. Designing Resistance

training. If the athlete had been attempting to lose Training Programs. 3rd ed. Champaign, IL: Human

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process. By doing this, the strength and conditioning Kilgore, E.E. Haff, K. Pierce, and M.H. Stone. Effects of

professional will be able to better plan for higher different set configurations on barbell velocity and

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