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Personally, I don’t really believe in ‘fitness testing’ per se …
This is a section from an article I finished a few weeks back.
What’s wrong with Fitness Testing?
Don’t get me started! I don’t have time to fully explain why fitness testing is so out of date in this one article, (email me I’ll send you a more detailed
article) but these are the main points.
Testing is open to manipulation – Bluff the early tests, then coming close to the key season games beat your previous scores and look like Lazarus.
Suitability of tests – Michael Jordan was probably the best basketball player ever, but in tests wasn’t even the best in Chicago Bulls. Explain that?
There is no clear relationship between fitness test performance and team performance – Studies from New Zealand, showed a 1% improvement in a rowing power endurance test could only transfer to a 0.3% improvement in actual rowing time!
Tests change the focus from performance to beating tests – If we keep testing we only develop players that are training to beat tests. We get great testers and poor footballers. As they say in Rugby – “Training like Tarzan and playing like Jane”
Most Tests have no relevance to Football – Someone please tell me how valuable a Vo2Max test is to a footballer – None. Thank you. So why are you testing it?
Testing Wastes Time – To properly test you need to rest for 2 days before hand, 1 testing day and recover for 2 days after the effort = 5 days training wasted.
Test Conditions – You can’t test speed on grass in summer and indoors in winter and compare them. You need identical testing conditions for the same test.
Fitness Changes every day – Anaerobic fitness changes faster than Alactic etc so a test is just a snap-shot in time.
You can’t compare athletes to each other only to each other – Can you compare two forwards like Tommy Walsh and Colin Cooper? Tell Tommy he’s too slow and Colin he’s not tall enough? Or will you compare Tommy to Dara O’Se because they’re about the same height? One a veteran with a training age of 15 years and another with a training age of 3 years 3?
Only as good as the second one – Unless you test in the exact same conditions twice you can’t compare an athlete.
What good is a fitness test? – What are you going to do if a player fails a test coming up to a big game? Drop him? You know the manger is going to play him no matter what the coach tells him so what is the point?
The real test is the game – If you really want to evaluate a player watch them play football and forget about treadmills and stop watches.
I could go on but the key point is this – Fitness is an expression of your body – a fluid, fluctuating bioelectric system.