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Tri-level Aerobic Test

The Tri-Level fitness testing battery involves a 10-second, 30-second and aerobic sub-maximal cycle tests. The tri-level aerobic fitness test, a submiximal test performed on a cycle ergomneter, is described here.

equipment required: Repco front access cycle ergometer (which uses air resistance to modify resistance), heart rate monitor (otherwise you can use the manual palpation method), work monitor unit (optional, some bikes have a workload dial attached to the cycle), stopwatch or clock, scales to determine the body weight of the athlete prior to the test.

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, test conditions. Adjust the bike seat height. Perform an appropriate warm-up. See more details of pre-test procedures.

procedure: The athlete pedals in one minute increments of 25 Watts (starting at 25 Watts) until their heart rate reaches 75% of their predicted maximum heart rate (estimated using the formula 220-age). They continue pedaling until the end of the minute during which the target heart rate is achieved. If the target heart rate is reached during the final minute, the workload at which it was achieved is calculated by extrapolation.

cycle fitness testcycle ergometer test

scoring:  The workload at which the 75% predicted heart rate is achieved is recorded. This score is then divided by body weight (Aerobic Index), and norm tables are available for comparison to the general population.

advantages: The seated athlete makes it appropriate for ECG monitoring. This test suits older participants as it does not stress the body maximally.

disadvantages: As this test is performed on a cycle ergometer, it would favor cyclists.

more information: measuring heart rate


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