Human Performance Laboratory

Test Venue: Human Performance Laboratory, UCC Mardyke Arena, Cork

Contact: Trevor Woods, E: t.woods@ucc.ie, T: +353 (0)21 490 4769

The Human Performance Laboratory at UCC was established in 1990 to provide a centre for fitness testing and health screening of all levels of participants from the recreational to the elite athlete and player. The laboratory has been extensively involved with the screening of and advising to UCC staff and students, UCC Scholarship athletes, IIS supported athletes, as well as local and provincial athletes and players. The laboratory offers two broad categories of testing:

Please see Costs below for a full list of costs.

UCC Physical Fitness Assessment

Allows an individual to establish their current level of fitness and identifies strengths and weaknesses. Common sports specific tests include those for cycling, running, rowing and all field sports. The exact battery of tests conducted is tailor-made to the particular sport. Having a fitness test can establish a base-line of your current fitness level. Repeated testing (e.g. 2-3 times per year) is more valuable as it enables the charting of progress over a period of time and thus indicates the effectiveness of your training program. Fitness testing is suited to anyone, both competitive or non-competitive, elite or non-elite who has a desire to improve their current level of fitness. Depending on the number of tests, an assessment takes 1.5-2.5 hours. A debrief of test results is included, and how data can be applied to training. A full report of results is received along with training recommendations. The basic fitness test package includes:

  • Blood Pressure
  • Body Composition (height, weight, % body fat based on 7 skin-fold method)
  • Lung Function (pre and post exercise)
  • Strength testing to include measures of leg power and core strength
  • Aerobic Capacity/VO2max (maximal or sub-maximal tests)
  • Low back/hamstring Flexibility

For the more competitive endurance athlete/cyclist/rower the following additional tests are recommended:

  • Blood lactate profile to identify the aerobic and lactate thresholds (+ training speeds, heart rates, & wattages to target for various training sessions)
  • Economy of movement

Additional optional tests include:

  • Blood analysis (eg. total cholesterol, full lipid profile, Hg, glucose, CK, etc)
  • Biodex Isokinetic strength assessment (eg. quadriceps/hamstrings; hip flexor/extensor; shoulder internal/external rotation, etc)
  • Anaerobic capacity – BT ATS cycling test, Cunningham & Faulkner treadmill sprint test)
  • Sprint tests such as 10m-20m-30m acceleration sprints and 8 x 40m multi-sprint endurance test using Brower timing gates
  • DartFish video analysis (eg. bike fit, running gait, etc)

Team Fitness

Team fitness assessments are also offered whereby an entire team/panel can be tested at one time in a range of tests. Each player receives a comprehensive report detailing their individual scores in relation to the positional averages. Below is an outline of the typical tests, although these can be amended to suit the particular sport:

  • Body Composition – body weight, height and % body fat based on skin-fold measurements
  • Leg Power and core strength – vertical jump, SB jump and abdominal strength test
  • Speed / Acceleration – 10-20-30 metre sprint times
  • Agility – T agility test
  • Anaerobic Endurance/MSE – 8 repeats of 40 metre sprints
  • Aerobic Endurance – YoYo intermittent recovery test

UCC Lifecheck Health Screen

The LifeCheck Program is particularly suited to those individuals who don’t partake in regular physical exercise and want to gauge their current state of health and fitness. The main tests conducted examine those elements which are important to good health. For example blood cholesterol, % body fat and blood pressure are strong predictors of the risk of heart disease. The average screening takes 90-120 min and includes:

  • Blood Pressure
  • Body Composition (height, weight, waist/hip ratio, % body fat)
  • Total Cholesterol
  • Lung Function (pre and post exercise)
  • Abdominal strength endurance
  • Aerobic Capacity (sub-maximal)
  • Flexibility – hamstring/low back flexibility

Additional optional tests include:

  • Full Cholesterol Profile (Total Cholesterol, Fasting Triglycerides, HDL)

Costs

All tests are followed up with a comprehensive report detailing results and recommendations regarding an exercise/training regime and diet. The cost of the above services are listed below. Discount prices are available for UCC staff and students, please contact the lab for details.

Service Cost
LifeCheck Health Screen €80
QuickCheck (B/P, % fat and cholesterol) €30
Fitness Assessment €90
Fitness Assessment with VO2 max & lactate profile €130
Lactate Profile only (treadmill, bike or row erg) €70
Body Composition (skin-fold analysis) €10
Cholesterol or Haemoglobin and B/P €20
Full Lipid Profile (chol, HDL, LDL, triglycerides) and B/P €30
Biodex Isokinetic Strength Assessment €80
VO2 max test only €50
Team Fitness Test (field-based) €20 – €30
20 Metre Shuttle Run €10