Triathlon Australia recently held a three-week altitude training camp in the alpine regions of Perisher Valley in the heart of snow country.
Under the guidance of Triathlon Australia’s International Performance Centre Head Coach, Jamie Turner five of our athletes were at the camp during different timeframes:
Natalie Van Coevorden, Ashleigh Gentle, Emma Jeffcoat, Lorcan Redmond and Declan Wilson.
Triathlon Australia are making sure our athletes have the very best support available in their pursuit of excellence.
We asked Jamie Turner to explain the theory of it all in simple terms.
The purpose of altitude training is ultimately to improve the performance in competition of our athletes. In general, the main benefits of altitude are two fold, to increase the amount of red blood cells in the body which deliver oxygen to the muscles, thus improving aerobic capacity and performance in endurance events (e.g. triathlon), and to increase the stress imposed on training of our athletes, which when managed correctly, is a powerful stimulus for improving fitness and therefore performance.
Perisher Valley was chosen as a training location given it satisfies a few requirements of altitude training. At 1750m, it is a high enough altitude to induce the changes in red blood cells we are after.
Perisher is a beautiful training location, providing a new training environment to our athletes, with easy access to amenities and a variety of training facilities with safe roads abound.
We are spending 3 weeks here, which is typically the time required for these changes to occur, and most elite athletes will typically spend 2-4 weeks at altitude dependent on target outcomes and timing within a season. Whilst a majority of training occurs in Perisher, there is also access within 20 minutes to Jindabyne, and training at 900-1000m altitude, which allows us to manipulate the altitude stimulus for different training intensities to achieve the desired outcomes.
The Support Team
During our time in Perisher we have had support and interventions from the below people.
Jamie Turner Triathlon Australia’s International Performance Centre Head Coach
Jarryd Knapp Strength and Conditioning Coach
Sara Guevara Physiotherapist
Dr Mike Martin Performance Psychologist
Dr Avish Sharma National Lead – Physiology, Research and Innovation
Dr Gregory Cox Sports Dietitian
Ashleigh Brunner Dietitian (1:1 athlete project)
Graeme Clarke Project Clothing (Triathlon Australia official Uniform, Compression & Apparel Partner)