Sports Coach Logo

website Translator

            topics

site search facility

 

 

 

 


Cooper VO2 max Test

Testing and measurement are the means of collecting information upon which subsequent performance evaluations and decisions are made but in the analysis we need to bear in mind the factors that may influence the results.

Objective

The Cooper Test (Cooper 1968)[1] is used to monitor the development of the athlete's aerobic endurance and to obtain an estimate of their VO2 max.

Required Resources

To undertake this test you will require:

  • 400 metre track
  • Stopwatch
  • Whistle
  • Assistant

How to conduct the test

This test requires the athlete to run as far as possible in 12 minutes.

  • The athlete warms up for 10 minutes
  • The assistant gives the command “GO”, starts the stopwatch and the athlete commences the test
  • The assistant keeps the athlete informed of the remaining time at the end of each lap (400m)
  • The assistant blows the whistle when the 12 minutes has elapsed and records the distance the athlete covered to the nearest 10 metres

Assessment

For an evaluation of the athlete's performance select the age group and gender, enter the total distance covered and then select the 'Calculate' button.

Age Gender Distance metres
   
Assessment -

Normative data for the Cooper Test

Male Athletes

Age Excellent Above Average Average Below Average Poor
13-14 >2700m 2400-2700m 2200-2399m 2100-2199m <2100m
15-16 >2800m 2500-2800m 2300-2499m 2200-2299m <2200m
17-19 >3000m 2700-3000m 2500-2699m 2300-2499m <2300m
20-29 >2800m 2400-2800m 2200-2399m 1600-2199m <1600m
30-39 >2700m 2300-2700m 1900-2299m 1500-1999m <1500m
40-49 >2500m 2100-2500m 1700-2099m 1400-1699m <1400m
>50 >2400m 2000-2400m 1600-1999m 1300-1599m <1300m

Female Athletes

Age Excellent Above Average Average Below Average Poor
13-14 >2000m 1900-2000m 1600-1899m 1500-1599m <1500m
15-16 >2100m 2000-2100m 1700-1999m 1600-1699m <1600m
17-20 >2300m 2100-2300m 1800-2099m 1700-1799m <1700m
20-29 >2700m 2200-2700m 1800-2199m 1500-1799m <1500m
30-39 >2500m 2000-2500m 1700-1999m 1400-1699m <1400m
40-49 >2300m 1900-2300m 1500-1899m 1200-1499m <1200m
>50 >2200m 1700-2200m 1400-1699m 1100-1399m <1100m

VO2max

An estimate of your VO2 max can be calculated as follows:

  • (Distance covered in metres - 504.9) ÷ 44.73

For an estimate of your VO2 max enter the Distance covered and then select the 'Calculate' button.

Distance metres VO2 max mls/kg/min

For an assessment of your VO2 max score see the VO2 max page.

Analysis

Analysis of the test result is by comparing it with the athlete's previous results for this test. It is expected that, with appropriate training between each test, the analysis would indicate an improvement in the athlete's VO2 max, anaerobic and aerobic thresholds.

Target Group

This test is suitable for endurance athletes and players of endurance sports (e.g. football, rugby) but not for individuals where the test would be contraindicated.

Reliability

Test reliability refers to the degree to which a test is consistent and stable in measuring what it is intended to measure. Reliability will depend upon how strict the test is conducted and the individual's level of motivation to perform the test. The following link provides a variety of factors that may influence the results and therefore the test reliability.

Validity

Test validity refers to the degree to which the test actually measures what it claims to measure and the extent to which inferences, conclusions, and decisions made on the basis of test scores are appropriate and meaningful. This test provides a means to monitor the effect of training on the athlete's physical development. There are published VO2 max tables and the correlation to actual VO2 max is high. For an assessment of your Vo2 max see the VO2 max normative data tables.

Advantages

  • Minimal equipment required
  • Simple to set up and conduct
  • More than one athlete can conduct the test at the same time
  • The test can be administered by the athlete

Disadvantages

  • Specific facilities required - 400m track
  • Assistant required to administer the test

Free Calculator

Referenced Material

  1. COOPER, K.H. (1968) A means of assessing maximal oxygen intake. JAMA. 203, p. 135-138

Associated References

  • GRANT, S. et al. (1995) A comparison of methods of predicting maximum oxygen uptake. British Journal of Sports Medicine, 29 (3), p. 147-152
  • ZWIREN, L. D. et al. (1991) Estimation of VO2max: a comparative analysis of five exercise tests. Research quarterly for exercise and sport, 62 (1), p. 73-78

Page Reference

The reference for this page is:

  • MACKENZIE, B. (1997) Cooper VO2 max Test [WWW] Available from: http://www.brianmac.co.uk/gentest.htm [Accessed

Associated Pages

The following Sports Coach pages should be read in conjunction with this page: