Physiological Demands of a Simulated BMX Competition

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Louis, J, Billaut, Francois, Bernad, T, Vettoretti, F, Hausswirth, C and Brisswalter, J (2012) Physiological Demands of a Simulated BMX Competition. International Journal of Sports Medicine, 34 (6). pp. 491-496. ISSN 0172-4622


The aim of this study was to investigate the physiological demands of Supercross BMX in elite athletes. Firstly athletes underwent an incremental cycling test to determine maximal oxygen uptake (VO2max) and power at ventilatory thresholds. In a second phase, athletes performed alone a simulated competition, consisting of 6 cycling races separated by 30 min of passive recovery on an actual BMX track. Oxygen uptake, blood lactate, anion gap and base excess (BE) were measured. Results indicated that a simulated BMX performed by elite athletes induces a high solicitation of both aerobic (mean peak VO2 (VO2peak): 94.3±1.2% VO2max) and anaerobic glycolysis (mean blood lactate: 14.5±4. 5 mmol.L − 1) during every race. Furthermore, the repetition of the 6 cycling races separated by 30 min of recovery led to a significant impairment of the acid-base balance from the third to the sixth race (mean decrease in BE:  − 18.8±7.5%, p<0.05). A significant relationship was found between the decrease in BE and VO2peak (r= − 0.73, p<0.05), indicating that VO2peak could explain for 54% of the variation in BMX performance. These results suggest that both oxygen-dependent and –independent fuel substrate pathways are important determinants of BMX performance.

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Item type Article
DOI 10.1055/s-0032-1327657
Official URL
Subjects Historical > FOR Classification > 1106 Human Movement and Sports Science
Current > Division/Research > College of Sports and Exercise Science
Keywords ResPubID25844, bicycle motocross, elite athletes, intermittent sprints, buffering capacity, aerobic demand, anaerobic glycolysis
Citations in Scopus 17 - View on Scopus
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