The Annual Periodization of Training Volumes of International-Level Cross-Country Skiers and Biathletes

in International Journal of Sports Physiology and Performance
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Purpose: To compare the training-volume (TrV) distribution of Russian international-level male biathletes, female biathletes, and cross-country skiers (XC) during an annual cycle. Methods: Day-to-day TrVs were recorded and averaged for a 5-year period for male biathletes (n = 6), female biathletes (n = 8), and XC (n = 14) with VO2max values of 77.7 (3.8), 64.6 (1.9), and 79.4 (3.5) mL·min−1·kg−1, respectively. Results: The volumes of low- and moderate-intensity endurance training and all types of nonspecific endurance and strength training gradually decreased toward the competition period. However, the volumes and proportions of high-intensity endurance training and specific exercises (roller skiing, skiing, and shooting during high-intensity endurance training) increased by the time of the competition period. The total volume of training, volumes of low- and moderate-intensity endurance training, moderate- and high-load strength training (70%–95% 1RM), and power/speed loads did not increase gradually but reached their maximum immediately after a short stage of initial training. All teams employed the “pyramid” model of intensity distribution. Compared with the biathletes, XC demonstrated a larger (P < .01) annual volume of endurance training (~190 h), low-intensity endurance training (~183 h), and strength training (~818 sets). They also engaged in more upper-body and core-strength exercises (~769 sets), and they reached their maximum aerobic TrVs in June, while the biathletes reached theirs in July. Conclusions: In recent decades, the traditional model of periodization has been altered. The Russian XC and biathletes had significant differences in TrVs.

Myakinchenko, Kriuchkov, and Adodin are with the Russian Federal Scientific Center for Physical Culture and Sports, Moscow, Russia. Feofilaktov is with Springfield College, Springfield, MA, USA.

Myakinchenko (eugst@yandex.ru) is corresponding author.
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