Harvard Step 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. The Harvard Step Test was developed by Brouha et al. (1943)
The objective of this test is to monitor the development of the athlete's cardiovascular system.
To undertake this test you will require:
How to conduct the test
This test requires the athlete to step up and down off a gym bench for 5 minutes at a rate 30 steps/minute
Normative data for the Harvard Step Test
The following table is for 16 year old athletes (Beashel and Taylor 1997) using a 45cm step.
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 level of fitness.
This test is suitable for active and sedentary athletes but not for individuals where the test would be contraindicated.
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.
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.
The following references provide additional information on this topic:
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