Sports Physiology is a specialised area within the field of exercise physiology that applies scientific principles and research to improve athletic performance. The SASI Sports Physiologists are specialised health professionals who consult with coaches and athletes to provide objective training recommendations and information that aim to maximise an athlete's performance potential. Physiological testing may take place in the controlled laboratory environment to compare exercise test results or perform specialised tests, or increasingly out in the training or competition environment to evaluate real-time response to sport specific training or activities.
Key aspects of the SASI Sports Physiologist's role are to:
- assist coaches in maximising fitness outcomes from exercise training
- Assess sport specific physiological capabilities either in the laboratory or field, to monitor acute responses to exercise and long-term adaptations to training.
- Use new technologies to support athletes and coaches in their daily training environment, during training camps and at competitions by providing fitness and performance feedback from field-based monitoring sessions.
- Provide advice about sports science innovations such as recovery practices and altitude training, and conduct applied research to enhance scientific knowledge of sporting performance.
- Collaborate with other sports science professionals from disciplines such as biomechanics, nutrition, strength and conditioning, psychology and performance analysis to provide holistic feedback about sports performance.
Simulated Altitude Training Facilities
In 2012 SASI Physiology established its own simulated altitude training facilities. The SASI 'altitude chamber' simulates altitudes up to 3000 metres and provides SASI athletes with the opportunity to train in controlled conditions under the supervision of SASI physiology and medical staff. SASI uses the altitude chamber as a supplementary training option and closely monitors each athlete's response to altitude training. SASI also operates 'altitude tents' to enable SASI athletes to 'sleep high' in simulated altitude conditions, thereby maximising their exposure to 'altitude' and increasing their likelihood of improved fitness. The altitude chamber and tents allow SASI athletes to undertake altitude training in a systematic, controlled and cost effective manner.
The SASI Physiology Laboratory is accredited by the Australian Sports Commission's National Sport Science Quality Assurance (NSSQA) Program as a certified high performance testing facility. SASI Physiology has accreditation across all NSSQA Program testing streams: Anthropometry; Field-testing; Oxygen consumption; Ergometry and Blood analysis