Research Thesis Topic
Determining the physiological relevance of training intensities relative to functional threshold power (FTP) for cyclists
Personalised exercise prescription is crucial for athletic performance and involves careful consideration of the frequency, duration and intensity of training. Functional threshold power (FTP) has emerged as a popular method for quantifying training intensities used by cycling coaches, cyclists and popular simulated (online) training platforms (i.e. Zwift). FTP is defined as the maximum amount of power that can be sustained in one hour and is often expressed in watts (W) or watts relative to body weight in kilograms (W/Kg).
There tends to be 3 to up to 7 training intensity zones based on FTP. Despite its widespread use amongst coaches and competitive (up to pro level) cyclists, the physiological relevance or stimulus achieved from training at each FTP 'zone' is unclear. Whether FTP-based training zones can delineate the heavy and severe domains of exercise is unknown. Furthermore, training studies on the exercise adaptations from training at different intensities relative to FTP are lacking, making it difficult to determine its utility in eliciting chronic adaptations.
This project will determine the physiological relevance of exercise intensities relative to FTP and characterise the training-induced changes at different training zones. It will make a substantial contribution to the cycling performance literature. The findings will be relevant to novice and professional cyclists, coaches and exercise professionals.
- School of Health and Wellbeing
- Human Movement and Sports Science
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