In test one the performers were being evaluated on their explosive/elastic strength which is their ability to expand a maximal amount of energy in one or a series of strong, sudden high-intensity movements or apply a successive and equal force rapidly; in this case carrying out a maximum number of sit ups in 30 seconds. Explosive strength predominantly uses the ATP/PC system. This is because although it is anaerobic it represents movements of a higher intensity but of shorter duration than dynamic which predominantly uses the lactic acid system. The main muscle contraction is concentric and takes advantage of the stretch reflex to add force to the contraction.
In test two the performers are being evaluated on their strength endurance which is the ability of a muscle to withstand repeated muscle contractions; in this case the time it takes to reach exhaustion in an abdominal curl sit-up test. This strength endurance also highlights the correlation with aerobic capacity where strength endurance is the ability of the muscles to ‘use’ the oxygen taken in and transported to the muscle cells. Strength endurance is essential in prolonged sub-maximal type exercise that requires a high percentage of slow twitch oxidative fibres and which is dependent upon the aerobic capacity system.
Performer A did better in test one as they might have had muscle hypertrophy with a greater percentage of fast-twitch muscle fibres and hyperplasia and larger cross-sectional area of muscle and a larger muscle size which greatens the potential force that can be generated or applied. They could also have an increased in ATP, PC and glycogen stores and an increased buffering capacity and tolerance of the fast twitch muscle fibres to work within high levels of lactic acid. This would give the performer the ability to expand a maximal amount of energy in the series of sit ups in 30 seconds, thus performing better than performer B.
In order to improve Performer B’s explosive strength I would create a strength training programme using a mixture of free weights and the performers own body weight, following the FITT principles (frequency, intensity, time and type) specific to the sport and also for the performer’s needs; to improve their anaerobic explosive strength. The training programme will last around 6 weeks and as it is a strength specific they can train 3-7 sessions weekly leaving 48hrs recovery between each sessions if it is the same muscle group. As the performer will be concentrating on improving the strength of the abdominal muscles (namely rectus abdominus, rectus femoris, external oblique’s and tensor fascia latae) they will be training these same, specific muscle groups and so 3-5 20 minute sessions per week would be more suitable.
In order to improve the maximum strength and power of the performer, I would make them do resistance e training with low repetitions of a high resistance in order to provide an overload for the performer to progress. Firstly I would test the performer to establish what their 1 rep max in order to set the intensity of their training to high resistance; 70-95% of their 1RM/>speed. As they will be training at a high intensity they will be doing fewer repetitions, of around 1-10. They will also have a longer recovery between each set/exercise for around 2-5 minutes. For example doing a weighted plank to strengthen the core; holding it for 30 seconds but only doing 2 repetitions with a long recovery of around 2 minutes in between. To add variation to the training program I would include a selection of exercises based upon working the core muscles involved in the sit up. For example Russian twists with a medicine ball in order to strengthen the obliques and crunches to strengthen the upper abdominal muscles. As the performer progresses through the