The Asia One Sports website has just announced that the s-League, the professional football (Soccer) league of Singapore, has dumped the beep test which was a mandatory cardiovascular endurance fitness test for players.
Players were required to maintain a minimum beep test level of 13.1. This proved to be very challenging and some criticized its relevance to football.
Players will now be required to complete a 2.4 kilometer run in less than 10 minutes and 15 seconds to earn the right to play in the professional league.
Interesting that some found the beep test to be irrelevant and so have replaced it with a test that requires players to run in a straight line at a pace of their choosing. I have to respectfully disagree and say that the beep test is a far more relevant test of both cardiovascular endurance and a players ability to perform the inherent requirements of the game. The ability to turn quickly and maintain a a variety of paces very much mimics the patterns of a game. In a game the player does not have the luxury of setting his own pace, rather he must react to the dynamics of the game. A continuous stretch of 2.4 kilometers without a single turn or change of direction is far less relevant to the constantly changing movement patterns that occur during a game of football, particularly at the highest level.
To my mind, the problem is not with the beep test or the players fitness level, the problem is in the way in which players execute the beep test. Their lack of ability to demonstrate their cardiovascular endurance through good beep test performance is part of the problem.
The beep test is like any other sporting activity, it requires fitness, but, also requires a sound strategy and the correct techniques to ensure the most effective and efficient beep test performance can be given.
With the right training program which address fitness AND beep test specific performance training players of the S-League can well prove the critics wrong.
Enjoy your beep test training!