Periodisation can decrease the risk of overtraining and injury, allows for maximising strength capacities, speed elements and endurance abilities as well as combating training burnout.

Benefits of periodisation

When working towards a fitness goal, most people end up exercising only at a moderate intensity, neither allowing the body to adapt to higher intensities nor allowing the body to recover at lower intensities. Thus, resulting in a lack of improvement, also known as plateauing. Periodisation training can be an excellent way to vary training and keep progress from plateauing while decreasing the risk of injury. In addition, periodisation allows for tapering of load when at the end of a mesocycle reducing the risk of injury between training phases and competition.

3 common periodisation training models

There are three main types of periodisation paradigms;

Linear periodisation

  • This involves changing load and volume over several intermediates or mesocycles (1-4 months). Each intermediate cycle would have progressive weeks of increasing intensity followed by a recover week of light load & intensity.

Nonlinear or undulating periodisation

  • Load and volume are changed more frequently, such as daily or weekly, typically with the load increasing but the volume decreasing. This training model works best for sports where there are multiple competitions during an event, eg; triathlon or equestrian eventing.

Reverse periodisation

  • This is a form of nonlinear periodisation, except that the load is decreased while the volume increases. This works well for endurance races consisting of long distances.

This is just the start of discussing periodisation, as weeks go on, we will be delving into the different capacities where periodisation works best for and those sporting groups/gym goers who can utilise this method to enhance their training & performance!

Enjoy this week’s read, sit tight for this new series of blogs and take care,


BSc Hons Sports Therapy MSST

MSc Strength and Conditioning




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