The Maximal Anaerobic Running Test (MART) was developed by the Research Institute for Olympic Sports in Jyvaskyla, Finland (Rusko et al., 1993). The MART consists of repeated 20-second sprints on a treadmill with 100 second rest periods. The sprint speeds increase until volitional exhaustion.
purpose: this is a test of anaerobic power during sprint activities, and the ability to recover between sprint efforts.
pre-test: Explain the test procedures to the subject. Perform screening of health risks and obtain informed consent. Prepare forms and record basic information such as age, height, body weight, gender and test conditions. Calibrate the treadmill if required. Perform a standard warm-up. See more details of pre-test procedures.
procedure: Perform a standard warm-up on the treadmill, running for 5 minutes at 8 km.h-1and 0% grade. Practice should also be provided for getting on and off the treadmill at high speeds. The test consists of running on a treadmill for 20 seconds with 100 seconds recovery between the runs. The speed of the first run is 3.97 m.s-1 (14.3 km.h-1) and the inclination 5 degrees (8.75%). Thereafter, the speed is increased by 0.35 m.s-1 (1.26 km.h-1) every run until exhaustion. The athlete should straddle the treadmill while the speed is set at the desired pace, then drop onto it to start sprinting for 20 seconds. Holding onto the handrails is only permitted while getting onto the treadmill. Strong vocal encouragement should be given during the final runs. The test is stopped once the athlete is unable to run at the set treadmill pace.
scoring: the result is listed as the highest speed achieved, and from this a measure of anaerobic power can also be calculated, expressed in O2.kg-1.ml-1, using this formula. Using the formula for power calculation, maximal aerobic power can be calculated from the speed of the last completed 20-second run, plus factoring the exhaustion time for the subsequent uncompleted sprint. If the subject stops 10 seconds into the run, a 1 ml.kg-1.min-1, or 0.06 m.s-1 increase is made to the power or speed result. Each additional 2 seconds completed adds another 1 ml.kg-1.min-1 or 0.06 m.s-1. If blood lactate measurements are also taken throughout the test, then the sprinting economy of the athlete can also be determined by comparing the lactate and power measurements throughout the test. Peak lactate can also be determined. (Rusko et al., 1993)
target population: the MART is used for testing sprinters (400 m), runners (800 m to 10K), cross country skiing (with poles on the treadmill). The MART is modified to MACT (cycling test) for speed skaters, cyclists and maybe a useful test for ice hockey, figure skating as well.
- For safety, a harness connected to the treadmill brake should be attached to the athlete when performing the sprints.
- The protocol of this test enables blood lactate measures to be made throughout the test for analysis.
- The Maximal Anaerobic Running Test (MART) was developed by the Research Institute for Olympic Sports in Jyvaskyla, Finland.
- The original article describing this test had the treadmill incline at 5 degrees (Rusko et al., 1993), this was reduced to 4 degrees in some later uses of the test, and the starting speed and step increases have also been changed in some studies (e.g. Nummela et al., 1996).
- Rusko, H., Nummela, A., Mero, A., (1993) A new method for the evaluation of anaerobic running power in athletes European Journal of Applied Physiology and Occupational Physiology 66(2):97-101
- Nummela A, Alberts M, Rijntjes RP, Luhtanen P, Rusko H. (1996) Reliability and validity of the maximal anaerobic running test. Int J Sports Med. 1996 Jul;17 Suppl 2:S97-102.
- Ari Nummela, Ismo Hämäläinen & Heikki Rusko (2007): Comparison of maximal anaerobic running tests on a treadmill and track, Journal of Sports Sciences, 25:1, 87-96 (5)
- Flávio Areal Lemos, Tony Meireles Santos (2013) Chronotropic response to maximal anaerobic running test - MART. Rev Bras Med Esporte vol.19 no.3 São Paulo May/June 2013
- The Anaerobic Cycling Test (MACT) is a modification of the MART.
- Cunningham-Faulkner test — maximal treadmill test at 20% gradient
- More about measuring power from running tests
- warming up for sprint testing
- Other anaerobic capacity tests
- Other fitness tests conducted on treadmills