VETERAN/MASTERS CYCLISTS PERSIST WITH TRAINING FREQUENCY AND DISTANCE

Macgregor, C., Reaburn, P. R., & Climstein, M. (2013). The effect of age on training practices in veteran cyclists: An Australian study. Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise, 45(5), Supplement abstract number 363.

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"Aging is typically accompanied by a decrease in physical activity levels. This increasingly sedentary lifestyle is associated with decreases in both aerobic and strength capacities and an increase in the incidence of chronic disease. However, veteran athletes maintain high levels of physical activity into old-age through sport-specific training. While the training practices of younger athletes across many sports have been investigated extensively, few studies have examined the training practices of older athletes and none have examined those of veteran cyclists."

This study examined the effect of age on weekly-training frequency and distance in competitive male veteran (>35 yrs) cyclists. An online survey examining weekly training-frequency and training-distance was conducted using the veteran males cycling membership database of Cycling Queensland (Australia). The 180 responding athletes (489 years) were categorized into three age groups 35-44 years (N = 78); 45-54 years (N = 54) and 55+ years (N = 46).

There were no between group differences in weekly-training frequency or training distance although the 45-54 year age-group exhibited a lower training frequency than the other two groups.

Implication. Male veteran cyclists appear to maintain both their weekly training frequency and distance with increasing age. The small but insignificant decrease in the training frequency of the 45-54 year age group may be explained by lifestyle factors such as focus on family and career.

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