Energy System Training for the Airbike

Energy System Training for the Airbike

OPEX Athlete using the Assault bike

How To Apply Basic Energy System Training Principles to the AirBike

If you’ve ever used the AirBike you’ll know what a versatile, reliable training tool it is. Before incorporating it into your client’s program, there are a few energy system principles you’ll need to learn.

(Coach’s Resource: If you’ve never programmed for the AirBike or program for it daily, our course Programming for the Airbike is your one-stop shop for all of the information you need to create AirBike progressions and includes sample programming.)   

Assess Your Client’s Needs

Before you can begin programming for the AirBike you need to test your client’s work capacity. James FitzGerald utilizes three specific tests to assess each energy system. Coaches should progress their clients through the aerobic test, then the alactic test, followed by the lactic test — progressing to each subsequent test when a client performs well.

Our coaches use the OPEX Work Assessment 10-minute max calories on the AirBike test to see where their client’s aerobic system sits. This test gives coaches a numerical value for a client’s work capacity allowing them to measure improvements over time. We cover the test used for the alactic and lactic energy systems in this course.

Use The Assessment to Program Progressive Training

With your client’s assessment on the AirBike complete, you should have a good sense of the client’s current fitness abilities. If the client’s aerobic capacity (OPEX Sustain) needs work, realize you can’t just start anywhere. To build your client’s aerobic system you’ll need to progress them from endurance to power on the bike.

Aerobic system training (endurance to power) would start at a slow pace, improving that pace over time and once a certain volume is reached, increasing that pace. OPEX coaches are taught that the aerobic system is the base for all systems and must be maximized (in relation to the client’s goal) before progressing to the next two systems. Progressive programming would often follow this work theory:

  1. Slow
  2. Slow + Moderate
  3. Slow + Moderate + Harder
  4. Slow + Moderate + Harder + Hardest
  5. Slow + Moderate + Harder + Hardest + Race

Learn how to create these type of progressive programs and work off sample programs with this course.

Understanding these basic energy system principles will give you the tools needed to program the AirBike for your client’s unique goals. To truly master Energy System Training, you need to understand all three energy systems: alactic (OPEX Gain), lactic (OPEX Pain), and aerobic (OPEX Sustain). Develop your understanding of Energy System Training with our three-hour course Programming for the AirBike in which James FitzGerald explains the principles of each system through 20 video chapters and includes sample programming.



Fitness Assessments for New Clients