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Testing Aerobic Fitness: The Aero Test

The Aero Test is a variation of the 20 meter Beep Test, and is primarily meant for measuring aerobic fitness. The equipment needed for this test includes a pre-recorded audio tape or CD, marking cones, a non-slip, flat surface and a recording sheet.

How the Aero Test Is Conducted

To perform the Aero Test, you will have to mark out two lines with cones. These lines should be 20 meters apart from each other. You will have to stand behind one of the lines when beginning the test. As the pre-recorded CD or tape instructs you, you will have to start running to the other line. Recorded beeps will also signal you when you have to turn and run to the opposite line. Each 20 meters that you run is counted as a score of one, and every beep is 0.05 km/h faster than the previous one. If you do not reach a line when a beep sounds, you will have to run to it and regain the desired pace within two more beeps. The test ends when you are unable to reach the line within the two beeps.

How the Score Is Recorded

Your score is the number of shuttles you complete before being unable to keep in time with the recording. This score can be converted into a score equivalent to VO2max with the help of a formula developed by Wilkinson et al.

VO2max (ml/kg/min) = 5.73 x peak speed (km/h) – 28.15

The Aero Test can be conducted on various sports teams and school groups. However, it should not be performed by people for whom a maximal fitness test is inadvisable. This includes people suffering from injuries, low fitness levels and other health problems. It should also be avoided by recreational athletes, as it can be quite tiring. The Aero Test is also not recommended for those in the pre-puberty stage, because the aerobic energy system is undeveloped at that time.

Warming up before you start an Aero Test is extremely important. Many people feel that as the test begins at a fairly slow pace, there's no need to warm up. It's better to stretch well before starting the test. This helps to warm up the muscles. Avoid any exercise that leads to fatigue before taking the test.

The Aero Test is one of the best measures for checking the aerobic fitness of a large group. This is because it can be conducted on many people simultaneously, and for a minimal cost. The Aero Test allows you to put in your maximum effort, which makes it an ideal endurance capacity test. Studies on the Aero Test show that it is a reliable fitness test. The results of the test can vary based on certain factors like practice and the level of strictness. As the Aero Test is conducted outdoors, environmental factors can also influence your results.

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