In the majority of gyms, there is no performance testing in place for you to monitor whether your gym performance is getting better over time.
It can be easy to get caught up in just chasing a number on the scale, a certain jean size or an ideal body image and in this process ignoring the journey you go through inside the gym. Performance testing is a fantastic way of evaluating your efforts in the gym.
Why is performance testing important?
By paying more attention to what you are doing inside the gym, and by monitoring if your gym performance is improving, you will stand more of a chance of achieving your aesthetic goals as a by-product of your improved gym performance.
Having evidence and measures of your improved performance will give you more of an incentive and the direction you need to continue making those improvements.
Another advantage of doing performance testing in a gym that provides the structure is the camaraderie you get from the other members who are also taking part. Sure, some may be a little competitive but overall if you’re in the right place it will be an environment where everyone wants you to do well and they spur you on and encourage your achievements.
Can I measure my own?
Yes, you can. There are numerous apps you can download on your phone to track your own gym performance, gym gadgets, to even keep your own training log, possibly following a programme all of which are useful tools but they all rely upon you to be the one who keeps all these numbers and deciding what to do and when in the gym. What then tends to happen here is, you stick to your own biases, neglect what you probably need to do and have no external environment to test yourself against or to validate that what you are doing is correct. Having an external environment can also bring out your competitive side increasing your performance.
We use MyZone.
In the gym
Your gym performance could be categorised into the amount of weight you lift for certain exercises such as a Deadlift for 1 rep with 100kg. The maximum amount of push up you can do until failure. Or the distance you can achieve on a piece of cardio equipment by a certain time.
These are just examples, but they can all help to provide you with information that your gym programme is working and that you are improving. Without regularly evaluating your performance how do you know what progress you are making? Or where improvements could be made?
Therefore having a gym which manages this for you, providing you with a progressive personal training programme that evaluates your gym performance every quarter, for example, is a great way of testing if your hard work in the gym is paying off.
If you tested performance every month it can be difficult to make progress due to the short duration. If you tested twice a year it might be too far apart for you to realise that your training for the last six months hasn’t been that beneficial.
At our personal training gym we test every quarter, this provides the perfect amount of time for you to make progress between tests. We regularly evaluate our testing to make continual improvements for our members.
What should performance testing include?
This is going to be personally dependant on your own goals. For the general gym-goer who wants to improve their overall fitness, their testing should cover multiple elements of fitness that can help to highlight areas you may want to improve or the areas which you are doing well in.
Below is an example of what performance testing might look like.
Lower body – Vertical Jump (height), Broad Jump (length)
Upper body – Medicine Ball throw (length)
Deadlift – 5 rep max
Bench Press – 5 rep max
Goblet Squat – Max reps in 1 minute with 50% of bodyweight
Pull Ups – Max reps
Push Ups – Max reps
Row – 2000m
Run – 1 mile
Sled Push – Max distance in 30 seconds
Max calories on a piece of cardio equipment in 30 seconds
Performance testing should be a part of your gym programme, without it you are missing a trick. Testing highlights what you’re excelling in and where you can improve.
If you can find a gym environment that provides this for you it’s a big advantage to your fitness journey.
If you have any questions on the above or would like some advice on how we could help you with your fitness goal, don’t hesitate, visit our gym and try one of our small group personal training sessions.