The bottom line in sports conditioning and fitness training is stress, not mental stress, but adaptive body stress. Sportsmen and women must put their bodies under a certain amount of stress (overload) to increase physical capabilities.” Trancred B.
If your goal is to have a certain level of performance and ability in executing a few limited skills, then engaging only in your sport will do the job. However, if you want better efficiency, constant improvement, and balanced abilities, you must participate in year round conditioning programs that involve all the 10 fitness components.
Components of Fitness
Largely you can consider that are 4 main components of fitness: strength, speed, endurance and flexibility. However, sports scientists have identified 10 components of fitness:
Strength – The ability of a muscular unit, or combination of muscular units, to apply force (e.g. holding or restraining an object or person)
Power – The ability to exert maximum muscular contraction instantly in an explosive burst of movements in a minimum time. The two components of power are strength and speed. (e.g. jumping or a sprint start)
Agility – The ability to perform a series of explosive power movements in rapid succession in opposing directions (e.g. ZigZag running)
Balance – The ability to control the body’s position, either stationary (e.g. a handstand) or while moving (e.g. a gymnastics stunt)
Flexibility – the ability to achieve an extended range of motion without being impeded by excess tissue, i.e. fat or muscle (e.g. executing a leg split)
Local Muscle Endurance – a single muscle’s ability to perform sustained work (e.g. rowing or cycling)
Cardiovascular Endurance – the heart’s ability to deliver blood to working muscles and their ability to use it (e.g. running long distances)
Strength Endurance – a muscle’s ability to perform a maximum contraction time after time (e.g. continuous explosive rebounding through an entire basketball game)
Accuracy– The ability to control movement in a given direction or at a given intensity.
Coordination– The ability to combine several distinct movement patterns into a singular distinct movement.
Physical & Motor Fitness
Physical fitness is the capacity of a person to meet the varied physical demands of their sport without reducing the athlete to a fatigued state. The components of physical fitness are:
– Body Composition
Motor Fitness is the capacity of a person to perform successfully at their sport. The components of motor fitness are:
– Power (speed & strength)
– Reaction Time