There are three main types of strength:
- Dynamic strength
This is the strength needed to support bodyweight over a period of time or applied as force against an object. For example, weightlifters need to support the weight above their head for the needed amount o time in order to successfully register the weight.
- Static strength
This is the strength applied to an unmoveable object with the greatest force. For example, For example, rugby players use static strength in scrums when pushing against the oposition.
- Explosive strength
This is the strength used in one short, sharp burst or movement. For example, sprinters explode out of the blocks in order to get the best start and begin to accelerate.
Strength can be improved through strength training using weights and a strength training programme.
- Speed is the ability to move body parts in one quick motion and as quickly as possible.
- It is a combination of reaction time and movement time.
- Greater speed is down to the greater percentage of fast twitching muscle fibres.
- Speed is important in most sports, especially sprint events such as cycling track sprints, 50m swims and the 100m and 200m sprints.
- It is also used in endurance events such as the 5000m run and 1500m freestyle when it is a close finish and it team sports when chasing the ball or an opponent.
- Speed can be improved through increasing certain aspects of strength but much is down to inherited factors such as the precentage of fast twitch muscle fibres.
- Power is the combination the maximum amount of speed and the maximum amount of strength, especially explosive strength.
- Power cannot usually be sustained for long periods of time.
- Power can be improved through both strength and speed training in order to improve the period of time it can be maintained.
- Power is important in sports where activity is peformed in short bursts such as boxing to be able to place powerful shorts.
- Cardiovascular endurance is also known as stamina and is the ability of the heart and the lungs to keep functioning effectively during endurance events.
- It is not only important in long distance events such as the triathlon and cross-country skiing but also in team games such as football and basketball in order to maintain energy throughout the entire of the game.
- This type of endurance can be improved through specific training including competiton and regular long distance training.
- Cardiovascular endurance can also be a marker of someones general fitness levels.
Flexibility is also known as suppleness and is the range of movement around a joint. Increased flexibility can also:
- More efficient and effective performance
- Reduced likelyhood of injury
- Improves body posture
Regular stretching exercises can improve flexibility levels, especially as you age where flexiblity inevitably decreses.