Assessing Athlete Strength Levels & Performance
Before each training cycle begins, the athlete should be tested to assess their one rep maximum in each of the primary exercises. They can also be tested in any performance area such as agility, speed, and endurance.
The 1RM for primary exercises is identified by having the athlete perform the exercise at a weight that they can only perform approximately 3 to 5 repetitions. With the weight and the number of reps, the actual 1RM can be found using the 1RM chart enclosed. Find the weight used in the far left column, and go across to the number of reps performed. The number shown is the athlete’s approximate 1RM for that exercise. Ideally, when performing the exercise, the athlete should use a weight that they cannot lift for more than 5 reps. As the number of reps that are performed increases, the actual 1RM becomes less accurate when using the 1RM chart. The lower the number of reps performed, the more accurate the 1RM on the chart.
The coach should closely monitor the athletes during the testing period. The coach should also require the athletes to use proper form on all exercises. If the athlete does not perform an exercise properly, that rep should not count. For example, if the athlete does not go down far enough on parallel squats, then those reps are disqualified. The coach should also monitor for incomplete reps; reps not fully completed do not count toward the 1RM score. Finally, the coach should make sure that the athletes are performing the exercises with a weight that they can lift for 3-5 reps. If the athlete exceeds 5 reps, then they should be encouraged to add more weight and attempt the exercise again after a brief rest period.
1RM’s for each primary exercise should be recorded so that the athlete can easily access this information. This information is then used to determine the volume of weight performed each week. To determine the volume, the athlete will use the enclosed intensity percentage chart. To use this chart, the athlete locates their 1RM along the left column. They then go across to find the intensity percentage for that particular day. For example, an athlete with a 200-pound 1RM bench press is to lift at an 88% intensity level during week #7. By using the intensity percentage chart, the athlete finds that their three sets in bench press should average 175 pounds that day.
Click on the following links to find the following testing protocol forms:
Used to record 1RM results and any other data for all players.
Used to help athletes progress and reach their potential throughout the year.
Uses data from athlete’s max out session to determine the 1RM.
Uses the athlete’s 1RM to determine the weight to be lifted for a particular workout based upon the intensity percentage for that week.
Areas of Athlete Assessment
In addition to testing the athletes on the primary lifting exercises, the coach may also want to assess an athlete’s level of ability in other areas of performance. Almost any performance-based exercise or drill can be used as an assessment tool. Keep in mind that the main objective of the assessment is to measure the progress of the athlete and the effectiveness of the training program. These are ideas for tests that you can use to asses an athlete’s level of ability:
3-5 rep max
1 or 2 mile run
12 minute run
20 yard dash
40 yard dash
60 yard dash
Pro agility drill