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Percept Mot Skills. 2010 Jun;110(3 Pt 1):721-35.

Race performance in male mountain ultra-marathoners: anthropometry or training?

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Facharzt FMH für Allgemeinmedizin, Gesundheitszentrum St. Gallen, St. Gallen, Switzerland.


The association of anthropometric variables, training volume, and prerace experience with race time was investigated in 25 male mountain ultra-marathoners (M age = 44.5 yr., SD = 7.0; M body mass = 73.0 kg, SD = 7.8; M body height = 1.78 m, SD = 0.07; M Body Mass Index = 22.9 kg/m2, SD = 1.8) in a 7-day mountain ultra-marathon over 350 km with a total 11,000 m of altitude gained and lost. The relationship of anthropometry (body mass, body height, Body Mass Index, percent body fat, circumferences of limbs, and thicknesses of skin-folds), training, and prerace experience (years as active runner, average training volume in hours and kilometres per week, average running speed in training, and personal best time in marathon running) with total race time was investigated using bivariate correlation analysis. None of the variables of anthropometry were related to total race time. Average speed in running during training and personal best time in marathon running were associated with total race time. Speed in running during training was correlated with personal best time in marathon running. The finding that average speed in running during training and personal best marathon time were related to race performance suggests that training and especially intensity might be of increased importance in these ultra-runners compared to anthropometry.

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