Friday, February 19, 2010

The Transfer of fitness and agility

There has been quite a lot on this blog in the past about "functional" training, particularly about whether there is much cross over in training. The basic science is that there is no strength training exercise that carries over to athletic or everyday movements. You can get stronger, but to get better at the skill you need to practice the skill. My interview with Luke Carlson covered all this.

Anyway, I spotted this study today. It seems to say that people who do lots of sport and "leisure time physical activity" and in particular play games, have better general motor ability. Obviosuly the whole causation / correlation thing comes in again (i.e. do they play more games because they have more skilled at coordination etc or do the games make them skilled) but it is interesting to reflect on. Generalism in terms of games etc benefits general athleticism? I don't know the key is to learn the skill I think and to get stronger.

Is Generic Physical Activity Or Specific Exercise Associated With Motor Abilities?

PURPOSE:: Evidence of the effect of leisure time physical activity (LTPA) modes on the motor abilities of a mature population is scarce. The purpose of this study was to compare the motor abilities of physically active and inactive men and women and to examine the associations of different exercise modes and former and recent LTPA with motor ability and various physical tests. METHODS:: The LTPA of the participants (men n=69, women n=79; aged 41-47 years) was ascertained by a modified Physical Activity Readiness Questionnaire, including questions on the frequency, duration and intensity of recent LTPA (R-LTPA) and former LTPA and on exercise modes. Motor abilities in terms of balance, agility and coordination were assessed with a battery of 9 tests supplemented with 5 physical fitness tests. Multiple statistical methods were used in analyses that were conducted separately for men and women. RESULTS:: The weekly MET hours of R-LTPA correlated statistically significantly with the tests of agility and static balance (rs =-0.275, p=.022; rs =-0.245, p=.043, respectively) among men, and with the static balance (rs =0.408), 2-km walking (rs =0.361), step squat (rs =0.355) (p

1 comment:

Natural Athlete said...

In psychometrics there is quality called motor intelligence it has to do with the ability to learn new motor tasks and solve novel motor problems.

Most studies of this have been focused on hand dexterity. However I speculate this is general characteristic like strength that can be developed and has global benefits towards performance of any physical task. Thus the observation that athletes like gymnasts, capoeriestas and traceurs tend to learn novel skills quicker because their training is always towards overcoming newer more complex challenges.

For general fitness, strength and endurance is not sufficient you have to develop movement intelligence.