Energy system interplay

Quiksilver Pro France 2012 - Day 1 Highlights


During surfing, there are a number of different movements taking place which involve all of the energy systems.
At the beginning of the activity, athletes generally run out to the water with their surf board in hand. During this time, the Anaerobic Glycolysis system is the dominant system as the duration is short and the intensity of the activity is relatively high with a heart rate of between 85 and 95%.
Once in the water, the athletes paddle out over the waves. Again the anaerobic system is dominant as intensity is high and duration would last over 15 seconds.
While waiting for a wave the aerobic system would be dominant as the body recovers. Intensity is low, below 60%, and the duration can last for more than 1 minute.
Usain Bolt wins 200 meter sprint

200 meter sprint

The ATP-PC system would be the dominant system during the first 6 or so seconds when the athlete moves from a stationary position to maximal intensity. During this time the anaerobic glycolysis system is slowly coming into play. In Usain Bolt's world record 200 meter sprint, he completes the race in 19.19 seconds. From around 6 seconds to the end of the race, the anaerobic system would have been dominant because of the drop in intensity and the almost 20 second duration. During recovery of the sprint, our aerobic system becomes dominant in synthesising ATP.
Michigan Water Polo Falls Just Short in 6-5 Loss to #4 UCLA

Water polo

Water polo is quite an intense sport.
During the very first part of water polo players move into the middle to fight for the ball. This is at high intensity (85-95% max HR) and lasts for over 10 or so seconds.
Shooting a goal would require the ATP-PC system as the dominant system as it is an explosive, maximal effort movement and lasts for a very short period of time.
Any rest times during the game where a player is not active for a period of time is fueled by the aerobic system while they synthesis ATP.