ISSN: 1899-1955
Human Movement
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2/2020
vol. 21
 
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abstract:
Original paper

Predictors of obstacle course racing performance

Weston Titus
1
,
Richard F. Armenta
2
,
Matthew M. Schubert
2

1.
Department of Health, Kinesiology, and Recreation Management, Palomar College, San Marcos, USA
2.
Department of Kinesiology, California State University, San Marcos, USA
Human Movement 2020 vol. 21 (2), 51-57
Online publish date: 2020/01/22
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Purpose
Obstacle course racing (OCR) has become a popular recreational activity in the recent 10 years, with more than 8.5 million participants. Despite the popularity, little is known about predictors of performance in OCR; research to date has focused on injury prevalence. The purpose of this study was to conduct laboratory and field tests of athletic performance in OCR athletes and examine their relationships to performance in simulated OCR.

Methods
Overall, 32 men and women (mean ± standard deviation age: 42 ± 10 years; OCR experience: 2.8 ± 2.3 years) completed laboratory testing for maximal oxygen uptake, anaerobic power (Wingate), vertical jump, flexibility, and body composition. Additional field tests were performed for 400-meter and 1-mile running time, muscle strength (back squats and deadlifts), and endurance (bucket carry for distance), grip strength, and burpees. The participants also completed a 3-mile simulated OCR. Independent t-tests examined differences between sex, and bivariate regressions were conducted between testing variables and OCR performance.

Results
For the combined sample, the best individual predictors were mean relative power from the Wingate tests (β ± standard error [SE]: –6.47 ± 1.12) and mile-run time (β ± SE: 6.43 ± 0.71). Multivariable analysis controlling for age, sex, and mile-run time found an independent association between bucket carry for distance and race time (β ± SE: –0.04 ± 0.01), but mile-run time was still the best predictor (β ± SE: 6.33 ± 0.97).

Conclusions
Data from the study suggest that aerobic and anaerobic fitness have important contributions to OCR success.

keywords:

obstacle course racing, performance prediction, running, functional training

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