Degree Name

PhD (Doctor of Philosophy)


Sport Physiology and Performance

Date of Award


Committee Chair or Co-Chairs

Michael H. Stone

Committee Members

Michael W. Ramsey, Christopher J. Sole, Jeremy Gentles


The purpose of this dissertation is to better understand the role of repeated-sprint ability (RSA) and resulting fatigue in cyclists; how it relates to measures of aerobic power and strength and power performance indices- due to the nature of cycling competitions and the necessity of RSA for success.

The first part of this dissertation attempted to elucidate the relationship between RSA and aerobic power and strength/ power measures in competitive cyclists. The purpose was to potentially illustrate the importance of the inclusion of strength and power training in the training regimen of cyclists. The findings showed several statistically significant relationships between variables of RSA and aerobic power or the isometric squat test.

The second part of the dissertation examined the effects of fatigue induced from the acute bout of repeat sprint exercise on strength and power measures in three different recovery periods. It is commonplace for cyclists to have several heats in one day of racing. Examining the effects of fatigue on strength measures such as peak force and rate of force development could begin to delineate how an individual experiences fatigue based on their own characteristics, enabling them to design a training program to address these strengths/ weaknesses to optimize performance and decrease fatigue. The results from a repeated measures analysis of variance found no statistically significant effect on PF or RFD. Additional comparisons showed moderate effects of fatigue on RFD throughout the three post-RSE trials. There was also a moderate correlation between the RSE fatigue % decrement score and the isometric RFD fatigue % decrement score.

What we may conclude from this dissertation is that fatigue has various causes and can vary with an individuals’ unique physiology and how they respond to performance variables on any specific day can vary. Development of increased strength and subsequent power, or “explosive strength”, may have advantages in competitive cycling. Coupling proper strength and power training with an aerobic training regimen, may greatly benefit the athlete by increasing their peak power output, economy of movement, delaying fatigue, improving anaerobic capacity, and overall enhancing their maximal speed.

Document Type

Dissertation - unrestricted


Copyright by the authors.