If the athlete comes to the testing, whatever the test type it is, it must be standardized. Standardization is also a big component in test reliability. Standardization means that you have to exclude or take into accound all possible variables that may influence the testing result. The most simple example is the situation, when athlete comes to maximal performance test having relatively hard workout the day before. In this case we do not know whether the poor test result is the result of the acute fatigue resulted from the workout the day before, or the result is poor due to overall loss of performance due to unsuitable training plan.
However, there are much more variables that have to be controlled in order to have standardized test conditions:
- The time of the day – human performance varies at different times of the day being higher in the morning and in the evening and lower in the afternoon. Therefore, being tested first time in the morning and the next time in the afternoon makes the interpretation of the test harder
- Type of the training cycle – if the athlete has general aerobic test after completion of the strength developing cycle, aerobic performance may have been diminished by strength.
- Nutrition – having negative energy balance in the organism has negative influence also to the test result. Lowered glycogen stores also influence both – aerobic and anaerobic performance in negative way.
- Sleep time – the athlete must have had enough sleep a night before testing
Warm-up – low quality warm-up results in slower recruitment of the aerobic energy systems at the beginning of the test, and therefore anaerobic energy is used in greater proportion. This further results in lower maximal performance, since part of the anaerobic energy that our body has available has been used during the initial phases of the test.