Training for endurance in sport and fitness
Training for endurance in sport and fitness

Start this free course now. Just create an account and sign in. Enrol and complete the course for a free statement of participation or digital badge if available.

3 Endurance exercise: physiological determinants

An image of an athlete riding a time-trial bike.
Figure 2 Physiological determinants of endurance exercise.

Although various physiological variables may contribute to endurance performance, the four key physiological determinants of endurance exercise are (according to Joyner and Coyle, 2008; Blumkaitis et al., 2016):

  1. VO2 max: the maximum amount of oxygen that the body can use
  2. lactate threshold: the exercise intensity and/or speed at which the body produces more lactate than it can remove
  3. exercise economy: the energetic cost of exercise
  4. anaerobic power and/or capacity: the ability to sustain a high level of force.

To understand how to train for endurance effectively you need to understand the importance of these determinants for endurance exercise.

Take your learning further

Making the decision to study can be a big step, which is why you'll want a trusted University. The Open University has 50 years’ experience delivering flexible learning and 170,000 students are studying with us right now. Take a look at all Open University courses.

If you are new to University-level study, we offer two introductory routes to our qualifications. You could either choose to start with an Access module, or a module which allows you to count your previous learning towards an Open University qualification. Read our guide on Where to take your learning next for more information.

Not ready for formal University study? Then browse over 1000 free courses on OpenLearn and sign up to our newsletter to hear about new free courses as they are released.

Every year, thousands of students decide to study with The Open University. With over 120 qualifications, we’ve got the right course for you.

Request an Open University prospectus371