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Adventure Sport Physiology

ISBN: 978-0-470-01510-0
456 pages
November 2008
Adventure Sport Physiology (0470015101) cover image


“…the most comprehensive adventure sport physiology book I am aware of; therefore, I recommend it wholeheartedly.” The Sport and Exercise Scientist, March 2009

This book provides students and professionals with a well-written, accessible introduction to the science underlying a variety of adventure sports. Written specifically for this increasingly popular field of study, the text has been divided into two parts: the first provides the foundations for adventure physiology, the second the specific physiological and environmental demands of a range of adventure sports including kayaking, canoeing, sailing, windsurfing, climbing, mountaineering and skiing.

Written by two adventure sports performers with extensive teaching and coaching experience, this book will prove invaluable to students taking courses in adventure and outdoor education and professional instructors involved in such activities. In addition, students of sport and exercise science and physical education will find this an excellent introduction to the physiological response to exercise.

  • Clearly explains the basic physiological principles and applies them to a variety of land and water-based sports.
  • In full colour throughout, the book includes numerous illustrations, together with key points and chapter summaries to reinforce learning.
  • Contains original pieces from elite and high-level athletes describing the physiological demands of their particular sport in a real-world context. These include London sports personality of the year Anna Hemmings, respected climbers Dave Macleod and Neil Gresham, and Olympic medallists Tim Brabants and Ben Ainslie.
  • Dedicated web site contains an original sample training programme and a set of adventure sport specific exercises.
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Table of Contents




1. A Historical Perspective: The Context of Adventure Physiology.

1.1 The earliest physiologists.

1.2 The founders of exercise physiology.

1.3 The development of environmental physiology.

1.4 The origins of adventure physiology.

1.5 The development of adventure sports.

2. Nutrition for Health and Performance.

2.1 Introduction to nutrition.

2.2 Carbohydrates.

2.3 Fats.

2.4 Proteins.

2.5 Vitamins.

2.6 Minerals.

2.7 Water.

3. The Structure and Functioning of the Human Body.

3.1 The cellular basis for life.

3.2 Skeletal system.

3.3 Nervous system.

3.4 Endocrine system.

3.5 Summary and study questions.

4. Fundamental Systems for Adventure Sports.

4.1 Muscular system.

4.2 Respiratory system.

4.3 Cardiovascular system.

4.4 Energy systems.

4.5 Summary and study questions.

5. Training Fundamentals.

5.1 Introduction to training methodology.

5.2 Developing and designing training programmes.

5.3 Summary and study questions.


6. Power and Power Endurance: The Explosive Activities.

6.1 Introduction.

6.2 Muscle fibre types.

6.3 The phosphagen system.

6.4 Physiological response to power and power endurance activities and fatigue.

6.5 Physiological adaptations to power training.

6.6 Nutritional ergogenic aids to power performance.

6.7 Summary and study questions.

7. Anaerobic Endurance: The Lactate Tolerance and Management Activities.

7.1 Introduction.

7.2 Glycolysis.

7.3 Physiological response to anaerobic endurance activities and fatigue.

7.4 Physiological adaptations to anaerobic endurance training.

7.5 Nutritional ergogenic aids to anaerobic performance.

7.6 Sport-specific physiology.

7.7 Summary and study questions.

8. The Intermittent Adventure Activities.

8.1 Introduction.

8.2 Physiology of intermittent activities.

8.3 Training and recovery in intermittent activity.

8.4 Nutrition and ergogenic aids for intermittent activities.

8.5 Water immersion.

8.6 The physiology of water-based adventure sports.

8.7 Summary and study questions.

9. Aerobic Endurance I: The High-Intensity Activities.

9.1 Introduction.

9.2 Aerobic-anaerobic transition and lactate threshold.

9.3 Physiological response to high-intensity endurance activities.

9.4 Physiological adaptations to training.

9.5 Nutritional ergogenic aids to aerobic performance.

9.6 Physiological challenge of thermal stress.

9.7 The physiology of land-based adventure sports.

9.8 The physiology of water-based adventure sports.

9.9 Summary and study questions.

10. Aerobic Activities II: Lower Intensity Endurance Activities.

10.1 Introduction.

10.2 Aerobic system.

10.3 Physiological response to lower intensity endurance activities.

10.4 Physiological adaptations to training.

10.5 Nutritional ergogenic aids to aerobic performance.

10.6 The effects of hyperbaric and hypobaric condition on performance.

10.7 The physiology of mountaineering.

10.8 Summary and study questions.



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The Wiley Advantage

  • An accessible, applied introduction to adventure physiology.
  • Presents the basics of the theory applied to a wide variety of land and water based adventure sports.
  • Excellent pedagogy including: learning objectives, problems and objective tests in each chapter.
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"[The book] is probably the most comprehensive adventure sport physiology book I am aware of; therefore I recommend it wholeheartedly." (The Sport and Exercise Scientist, January 2009)
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