What is periodisation in exercise?

Have you often found that you’re constantly tired while training for an event, or not seeing the desired results? The problem may be with your training structure, otherwise known as periodisation.

What it periodisation?

Periodisation is the systematic planning  of physical training, with the aim of reaching peak performance at competitions or events. It involves progressive cycling of various aspects of an exercise program during a specific period.

Training Cycles:

Periodisation of a training program usually consists of the following training cycles:

  • Microcycle: One week
  • Mesocycle: One month
  • Macrocycle: One year (planning for the main event/competition)

Throughout these cycles, training is structured in a specific way to boost your performance in the long-term. Harder sessions allow the body to adapt and become stronger, and easier sessions allow for recovery.

Tapering Before An Event:

Tapering refers to reducing the exercise load in the weeks leading up to an important event or competition. This allows for the muscles and tissues to recover, and for the cells to build up their energy stores for the event. Tapering is an established practise in many endurance sports, such as long-distance running and swimming. 

The tapering phase usually starts 1-3 weeks before the event, depending on the duration of the event (i.e. whether is a sprint or endurance event). During the tapering phase, the exercise volume is reduced, while intensity is maintained.

If you’ve been following a well-structured program, you’ll arrive at the start line of your event with fresh muscles and an alert mind.

You can rest assured that you’ve put in the hard work during your training. All that’s left to do is enjoy the event!

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