The pace of sport is always variable. Sometimes games are high paced and other games are slower paced. Some competitions have more fierce competition than others. It is important that athletes can maintain high levels of cognitive processing regardless of their physical output. To replicate the physical demands of sports, Soma NPT has a specialized training mode that can be applied via Soma Analytics which allows you to layer extra physical load on top of the cognitive task. This mode is called Adaptive Heart Rate Zone mode.
This mode requires athletes to be performing cardiovascular training while also performing cognitive training at the same time. AHR mode has been designed to take athletes through multiple heart rate zones randomly over the duration of the cognitive task ( Heart Rate Zones 1-4).
NOTE: The athlete must wear a heart rate strap (Polar H10) if this mode has been applied to cognitive tasks within their training plan.
It is extremely difficult to maintain fast, accurate decisions at the same time as physically exerting yourself within a certain heart rate range. By applying this specialized training mode to cognitive tasks, you are forcing the athlete to change their physical output constantly and maintain their decision-making capabilities. This emulates and trains athletes for the challenges of real-life sport situations.
Cognitive Task Selection For Sports Performance.
By combining physical and cognitive training, you are maximizing your athlete's training time and increasing their neural capacity to handle more physically and mentally. The effects of this kind of training have been well-studied,
Concurrent brain endurance training improves endurance exercise performance.
Brain Endurance Training (BET) 32% - Improvement
Control 12% - Improvement
The effect of simultaneous physical and brain endurance training on fatigue and exercise tolerance inactive people.
Brain Endurance Training (BET) 176% - Improvement
Control 86% - Improvement
A randomized controlled trial of Brain Endurance Training (BET) to reduce fatigue during endurance exercise.
Brain Endurance Training (BET) 126% - Improvement
Control 42% - Improvement
Study: Concurrent brain endurance training improves endurance exercise performance.
Mental fatigue impairs endurance exercise. Brain endurance training (BET) – engaging in cognitively fatiguing tasks during exercise - can develop resilience to mental fatigue and improve physical performance over physical training alone. The mechanism for this effect is unknown.
This experiment examines if BET enhances performance over physical training and investigates potential underlying physiological mechanisms.
A mixed design randomised control trial.
Pre- and post-testing: 36 participants completed dynamic rhythmic muscular endurance handgrip tasks requiring generation of as much force as possible once a second for 300 s, performed under 3 counterbalanced conditions: following 600 s of a 2-back memory/attention task (subsequent); while performing a 2-back task (concurrent); and on its own (solo). Cardiac activity, electromyographic forearm activity, pre-frontal cerebral haemodynamics (near infrared spectroscopy), and force were recorded. Training: Participants (randomised to a Control or BET group) completed 24 (6 weeks) submaximal hand contractions sessions. The BET group also completed concurrent cognitive tasks (2-back, Stroop). Measures of motivation, physical and mental exertion and mental fatigue were collected throughout.
Endurance performance, across the 3 tasks, improved more following BET (32%) than Control (12%) (p < 0.05). The better performance following BET occurred with a higher pre-frontal oxygenation during the post-training physical tasks over time relative to Control (p < 0.05).
Concurrent BET improved endurance performance over physical training alone. This was accompanied by a training-induced maintenance of pre-frontal oxygenation, suggestive of reduced mental effort during physical activity.
Study: The effect of simultaneous physical and brain endurance training on fatigue and exercise tolerance inactive people.
The results of the present study showed that performing brain and physical endurance exercises simultaneously increases the time to exhaustion more than physical endurance exercises. This significant increase in endurance performance was associated with a significant reduction in stone perception in the group of physical endurance training + brain endurance training during strenuous endurance activity. However, the heart rate index did not change significantly after these two interventions. In addition, the results of the present study showed that the time to exhaustion after 24 training sessions in both groups of physical endurance training + brain endurance training and physical endurance training, in the post-test, increased significantly compared to the pre-test; The change was 176% in the group of physical endurance training + brain endurance training and 86% in the group of physical endurance training.
Study: A randomized controlled trial of Brain Endurance Training (BET) to reduce fatigue during endurance exercise.
PURPOSE: Brain Endurance Training (BET) is a new training method that uses acute mental fatigue as a training stimulus to induce chronic reductions in fatigue during physical and/or cognitive tasks. The aim of this study was to test the efficacy of BET in alleviating fatigue during endurance exercise in healthy male adults. The hypotheses were that the combination of BET and standard endurance training increases endurance exercise performance and reduces rating of perceived exertion (RPE) more than standard endurance training alone.
METHODS: 35 healthy male volunteers were randomly assigned to two different training groups: BET and control. Both groups trained on a cycle ergometer for 60 min at 65% VO2max. Whilst cycling, the BET group performed a mentally fatiguing task on a computer. The control group was not involved in any mentally fatiguing task whilst cycling. Both groups trained three times a week for 12 weeks. VO2max and endurance exercise performance (time to exhaustion [TTE] test at 75% of current VO2max) were measured at baseline (pre-test), after six weeks of training (mid-test) and after 12 weeks of training (post-test). RPE was measured every minute during the TTE test. Data were analysed using mixed model ANOVAs. RESULTS: VO2max increased similarly in both groups from 40 ± 5 ml/kg/min to 52 ± 6 ml/kg/min (P < 0.01). However, TTE increased significantly more in the BET group (pre-test 28 ± 9 min; mid-test 39 ± 11 min; post-test 55 ± 17 min) than in the control group (pre-test 18 ± 5 min; mid-test 23 ± 7 min; post-test 28 ± 12 min) (p < 0.01). Analysis of covariance to adjust for the pre-test difference in TTE also revealed a larger improvement in the BET group (+126%) compared to the control group (+42%) (p< 0.01). RPE during the TTE was significantly lower in the BET group compared to the control group (p < 0.05).
CONCLUSION: The results of this study provide initial evidence that the combination of BET and standard endurance training is more effective than standard endurance training alone in alleviating fatigue during endurance exercise in healthy male adults.
Adaptive Heart Rate Zone Mode - FAQs
What does AHR stand for?
Adaptive Heart Rate Zone Mode
What is AHR mode?
Adaptive Heart Rate Zone Mode is designed to give athletes heart rate zone training. The adaptive aspect of this mode allows an athlete to go through multiple heart rate zones while maintaining cognitive stress on their brain. If an athlete goes outside the target heart rate zone the task will be paused for 10 seconds to allow them to get back into the target Heart Rate Zone (HRZ).
When to use Adaptive Heart Rate Zone mode
When you want to increase physical workload during an athlete's cognitive training.
How does Soma Calculate the Max HR?
The user will enter their age and Soma NPT will calculate the Max HR.
How is Max HR calculated?
220 - Age
What are Heart Rate Zones?
We all have a personal resting heart rate, ‘a minimum heart rate’, and a maximum heart rate. And between these values are different HR zones that correspond to training intensity and training benefit.
There are different ways to identify your heart rate zones calculation. One simple way is to define them as percentages of your maximum heart rate.
What are the 5 Heart Rate Zones?
There are five different heart rate zones (1–5)
How to Integrate Adaptive Heart Rate Zone Mode.
Pre Session or Post Session
Perform before or after your athlete's main physical training session.
Perform between sets during the main physical training session.
Using an exercise bike ensures you are able to maintain the required physical workload while performing your cognitive training.
How To Integrate Cognitive Training