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Physical fitness - Cardio-vascular endurance

Paper Type: Free Essay Subject: Sports
Wordcount: 1454 words Published: 1st Jan 2015

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Fitness components in sport

Health related components

Cardio-vascular endurance

Cardio-vascular endurance is how the body supplies oxygen to fuel the muscles when participating in sport or high endurance events and situations. It does this through the heart, blood vessels, blood and respiratory system. Footballers need cardio-vascular endurance when the play because they need to be able to run throughout the whole 90 mins. Oxygen to the muscles is what allows them to do this. Swimmers need cardio-vascular endurance when they do long distance races e.g. 1500m swimming race where their body need a descent supply of oxygen to the muscles from start to finish. Boxers need to have excellent c-v endurance to be able to compete at a strong pace throughout a fight. Their muscles need oxygen in order to work throughout a fight so that they can throw punch after punch and block after block. Both these motions need the muscles to contract, flex and tense.

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Muscular endurance

Muscular endurance is the ability to perform repetitive or sustained muscular contractions against some resistance for an extended period of time. Muscular endurance allows athletes to do more strenuous work. Footballers need muscular endurance to be able to repeatedly use muscles throughout a match e.g. in sprinting a player uses the quads and caths over and over throughout the game. In swimming they use their muscles continually over the race e.g. in butterfly they use most if not all the bodies’ muscles to drag themselves through the water. Boxers need muscular endurance to be able to continuously throw punches from round one to round twelve because they need to be swinging away for the whole fight but if they cant then they wont be able to fight the whole twelve rounds.

Muscular strength

Muscular strength is the ability of an athlete to perform a sport at a sustained high tempo for a short amount of time. Footballers need muscular strength to be able to exert strength when they shoot the ball from a long distance so that it travels fast and with power towards their target. Swimmers use strength when they push of the back board after a length in order to start the next lap. This requires the use and strength from the quads, calfs and foot muscles for the push off. In boxing when a fight needs to dodge a shot they may use the tactic of leaning back to avoid the punch. This requires the use the abdominal muscles. These need strength to be able to support his upper body as he leans back.


There are two types of flexibility. They are static flexibility and dynamic flexibility. Static is when an athlete slowly stretch and hold the position for a period of time. Dynamic is when an athlete makes a quick movement in which they stretch. In football a goal keeper needs flexibility when he stretches for the ball e.g. when the ball is heading for the top corner. Swimmers need good flexibility to be able to stretch their arms out properly and have a good stroke length e.g. Michael Phellps showed good flexibility when he was waiting on the starting board by showing his arm span and stretching it to its relaxed max before the start of the race. Boxers don’t really need too much flexibility but the one time they do need is when they lean back. They stretch the back throughout this movement.

Body composition

Body composition is the amount of fat, bone and muscle in the human body. Athletes need different body compositions to perform different sports. Footballers need to have a slim body composition because they need to be able to carry their weight around the pitch. If a footballer is fat then it makes it harder to run for long periods and also makes it harder to carry their own body weight. Swimmers need to be slim so that they can travel through the water faster and smoother. Depending on a boxers weight class a boxer needs to big and heavy or thin and light. This is so they can perform fairly at their weight class.

Skill-related fitness


Balance is a skill that is naturally learnt after birth but can be developed further by an athlete so they can perform their sport properly. Balance is important because we must stay in a state of complete balance when performing are sports So that we don’t fall over when performing. Some athletes need more balance than others. Footballers need balance when they shot. They put their arms into a supportive stance for when they hit the ball so that they don’t lose their balance. Swimmers need balance when they are getting ready to dive in at the start of a race. A good balance can give them a good start allows them to get a head start. Boxer need balance so they can throw strong punches and put their whole body weight behind the shot also when they dodge shots they need to have good balance to enable them to recover into the stance quicker.


Speed is the quickness of a limb over a distance in time but it does not just affect the legs it involves all limbs and body parts from legs, torso to arms. Some footballers need to be fast this needs speed e.g. a winger needs speed because he is expected to run the lines to create the opposition with a problem. Swimmers need speed when they lash through the water to keep a good stroke per minute time. Boxers need speed when they throw a jab so that they can catch the opponent off guard and also so they can get out the way of any counter punches.

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Power is the ability to apply force quickly. “A simple equation for power is: muscular strength X speed = Power”. http://somatotype.net/nzfitness/pages/CompOFfit.htm . Power contains speed because in order to apply force you need speed. Footballers need power when shooting at goal. They need the quads and the calf’s to gather up power on their way to the ball so that the shot can be harder and faster. Swimmers need power to be able to pull them through the water at pace e.g. when they do the freestyle they need to have fast, strong and powerful stokes. Boxer throw punch after punch, these punches need to be fast and power full so that they are unseen and effective e.g. a hook needs to be fast and power full so that the opponent does not see it and even if he does block the shot it will still hurt.

Reaction time

Reaction time is the time it takes for an athlete to react to a situation that is happening very quickly (The time taken to react to any stimuli). A goal keeper in football needs to have fast reacting times to be able to react to shots coming from 50yds to 2yds. Swimmers need to be able to react to the starting alarm as quickly impossible so that they are not left behind and can establish a lead. For boxers to be able to dodge in coming punches they need to react to the earliest stimuli and duck and swerve out the way.


Agility is the ability to stop and change direction or movement quickly. Footballers need agility because the game can change so quickly e.g. the goalkeeper blocks a shoot but the ball lands right in front of the goal, the player with best agility should react quickest and move fastest in order to defend it or strike it into the goal. Swimmers don’t really need to be to agile but one place they do need it is when they are turning around for the next length because they need this switch of direction to be as quick as possible also being in water makes it harder because of the extra resistance. Boxers need to be agile unless they want to take hit after hit without getting out the way. When a boxer is be attacked by his opponent he will need the agility in his muscles to be able to move lightening quick to get out the way.


Co-ordination is the ability to do something in a combination continuously. Footballers need co-ordination so that they can move the ball fluently between their legs because in football it’s not just putting on foot in front of the other it also about judging the speed of the ball and your own speed. Then when you shot you need to have placed your feet in the right places this takes co-ordination. Swimmers need co-ordination throughout a race. It quite easy but they need to co-ordinate when they should come up for oxygen so that they don’t lose their speedy pace for example in the freestyle the swimmers have a number of strokes that they prefer to do before they come up for oxygen. This is all quite simple but if you lose your count and co-ordination then you can do too many stroke or too few and lose your oxygen pattern.


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