Physiological Correlates of Cycling Performance in Amateur Mountain Bikers


  • Donvina Vaitkevičiūtė
  • Kazys Milašius



Research background and hypothesis. Aerobic fitness of high-performance mountain bikers explains about 40%
of variance in performance. This suggests that other factors such as anaerobic power and capacity as well as technical
abilities need to be considered in the physiological assessment (Impellizzeri et al., 2005 a). We found a lot studies
investigating track and road cyclists, but there are no studies concerning the relationship between physiological tests
and cycling performance in Lithuanian mountain bikers.
The aim of this study was to investigate the physiological correlates of cycling performance in amateur mountain
Research  methods.  Fifteen  Lithuanian  mountain  bikers  participated  in  the  study.  The  10-second  test  was
performed to estimate special alactic anaerobic power output, whereas ae 30-second Wingate test was performed to
estimate composite alactic anaerobic glycolytic power output. For the evaluation of the aerobic capacity, a progressive
incremental laboratory cycling test to exhaustion was performed.
Research results. We found a significant negative correlation between cycling performance and alactic anaerobic
relative  peak  power  output  (r  =  –0.534,  p  <  0.05)  and  lactate  concentration  after  the  progressive  incremental
cycling  test  to  exhaustion  (r  =  –0.625,  p  <  0.05).  However,  we  did  not  find  a  significant  correlation  between
cycling performance and VO 2 max (r = –0.024, p > 0.05) and composite alactic anaerobic glycolytic power output
(r = –0.269, p > 0.05).
Discussion and conclusions. Our findings suggest that alactic anaerobic power output and active glycolysis play
a very important role in off-road cycling performance. This is essential because of the fast starting phase of the race
and steep climbs.

Keywords: mountain bike, cycling, performance, power output, maximal oxygen uptake.


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How to Cite

Vaitkevičiūtė, D., & Milašius, K. (2018). Physiological Correlates of Cycling Performance in Amateur Mountain Bikers. Baltic Journal of Sport and Health Sciences, 2(85).



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