Aspiring champions in rowing, cycling, triathlon, athletics and hockey received a boost to their training after participating in recent exercise testing at CQUniversity Bundaberg.
Led by CQUniversity physiotherapy lecturer Sasha Job, the research testing determined the fitness, strength, power, agility and other measures of physical function of 26 local athletes.
Ms Job said the joint initiative between Wide Bay Sports Academy (WBSA), CQU and local physiotherapists provided baseline data on the athletes, allowing the program coordinators to identify strengths and areas for improvement.
“The young athletes, aged between 14-17 years, will receive individualised planning to support their progression to the next level of performance,” she explained.
“Results will help support goal-setting, allow us to provide more targeted strength and conditioning programs, and monitor performance.”
“The WBSA is ongoing and exercise testing will now occur routinely every six months.”
Ms Job said the ability to provide the opportunity for testing locally made it accessible to far more athletes, to improve their ability and challenge themselves without having to travel.
“Testing locally minimises the disruption and cost of travel to Brisbane for our athletes and their families,” Ms Job said.
“It is also great for local physiotherapy and exercise science students, offering them local volunteer and work integrated learning opportunities.
“Data is being analysed and will be used to support program development for the athletes with testing occurring every six months to monitor performance.”
Ms Job said participants enjoyed being part of the athlete testing program with it allowing them to now set new goals and challenge themselves.
“Most athletes had never undergone testing before or had travelled for hours to have it done,” she said.
“They enjoyed the testing and were grateful to have some objective measures for their performance.
“Many athletes are now setting challenging but realistic goals for the first time knowing there is a way to track their progress.”
The program also assisted in training the next generation of allied health professionals with exercise science and physiotherapy students involved in the testing and is continuing to expand to support athletes from other sports.
This athlete testing session was the first interprofessional collaboration between exercise science and physiotherapy at CQUniversity Bundaberg.
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