Thoughts on Testing


When you are testing it is important to consider all of the following:

  • Know what you are looking for, there are periods of training where you should see marked improvement and other times when you should see stabilization or even slight regression on certain tests. Remember the tests should reflect the training.
  • Know what you are going to do when you find it. If you see regression then what adjustments will you make, conversely if you see unexpected improvement what will you do?
  • Regular monitoring is necessary to determine strength and weaknesses and progress of training. The goal in training is minimize weaknesses and to maximize training, testing can be a valuable guide to this process.
  • Testing helps to individualize training. There is much individual variability in adaptive responses to various training stimuli. Two individuals could have the opposite response to the same training session or training cycle. Testing can identify how each individual will respond and allow training adjustments to be made accordingly.
  • Testing will give constant feedback to the athletes and coaches as to the effects of training. Do not wait until competition to ascertain training response, use testing to be proactive. Testing must dovetail into training. It is an integral part of the whole training spectrum.

Do not use testing to:

  • Select a team; team selection should be based on results in the competitive arena of the actual sport. Tests can verify what you see or do not see in the competitive arena, but they should not be the sole criteria for team selection.
  • Predict performance. However it can give a statutes report as to progress toward a goal. Actual competition in the game, match or meet performance is dependent on so much more than the physical capacities identified through testing.
Vern Gambetta

Vern Gambetta

Director at Gambetta Sports Training Systems
Vern is the Director of Gambetta Sports Training Systems. He has been the a conditioning coach for several MLS teams as well as the conditioning consultant to the US Men's World Cup Soccer team. Vern is the former Director of Conditioning for the Chicago White Sox and New York Mets. He has lectured and conducted clinics in Canada, Japan, Australia and Europe and has authored six books and over one hundred articles related to coaching and sport performance in a variety of sports. He has a BA in teaching with a coaching minor and an MA in Education with an emphasis in physical education from Stanford University.
Vern Gambetta


Athletic Development Coach & Consultant. Founder of GAIN Network. Proud dad. Love to read everything.
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Vern Gambetta

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