Identifying readiness to train: when to push and when to pull
Monitoring training load – and in particular an athlete’s ability to cope with it – is now common practice; often the data is used to define an athlete’s ‘readiness’ to train. The aim of this monitoring is to identify when athletes should be rested, when they can train as per normal, and when they can have their training load ramped up. Crudely put, this monitoring provides a ‘push or pull’ diagnosis to each athlete’s training day. In this context, push defines an increase in training load, whereas pull refers to a reduction in training load. Although the idea of implementing this is generally well accepted, the statistical approach to identifying the point of push or pull seems unstandardised and – anecdotally – varies from club to club. Therefore, presenting methods to analyse the data in this regard will be the aim of this paper. The reader can then apply justifiable and sensitive methods of data analysis to their morning measures of fatigue, such that the subsequent training session can be appropriately altered.
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