Sports training as a process of morpho-functional adaptation
Increasing performance means to reach systematically a certain number of both non-specific and specific changes mainly at cellular level (increase in energy potentials, development of physiological functions – breathing, heart activity and improving coordination). The basis of such changes can be easily explained by physiological concepts (homeostasis-stress-adaptation).
Influenced by the environment, human organism tends to keep processes important for life and inner environment within bilogically acceptable limits. Inner environment is controlled by blood, lymph and bioplasm and is maintained by blood circulation, breathing, digesting, etc. Homeostasis is a constant balanced state of the organism. From the point of view of sports training, homeostasis can be imagined as current level of training before annual preparatory training cycle.
Controlled violation of homeostasis with physical activity is a basic principle of improving fitness. Sports training attempts to violate the homeostasis of the athlete in a controlled way through exercise load. Exercise load affects the organism of the athlete as a stressor. Due to the effect of the stressor, various physiological functions of human organism get mobilised. Mobilisation of physiological functions of organism is manifested for instance by increased breathing and heart rates, growth in the level of adrenalin etc. In sports training, such stressors are called adaption stimulus. Adaption stimuli are applied in the form of physical exercise. Physical exercise is for example repeated weight lifting during bench press exercise in a gym.
As a result of repeated long-term effects of the adaptation stimuli is adaptation. Adaptation is defined as a beneficial change of the organism which aims at maintaining homeostasis at a new higher level in respect to quality. In sports, adaptation is the basis of higher levels of training.
Sports training as a process of motor learning
To a significatn extant, sports skills condition the level of the resulting sports performance. It is hard to imagine an athlete javelin thrower, who is perfectly prepared to force the site, but has not mastered the technique of the javelin. It can reach peak performance? The answer is simple: it cannot. The required quality of the javelin throw has not been acquired.
Skill is defined as learning acquired prerequisite for the implementation of a given motion task. Specific process in which there is a skills-acquisition process is called motor learning.
Theoretical background of motor learning is knowledge about nervous government and movement regulation which reflect mainly the activities of the organism. Nervous system receives processes and stores information from both outer and inner environment and based on this information it governs motor activity. This system includes the following parts: afferent (towards the center), central, efferent (away from the center) and feedback. In the central part, the supplied piece of information is processed and a corresponding motor program for solving the task is created. Through motor system, the efferent part implements the selected solution program. Feedback part has checking and regulative function while controlling motor activities.
The process of motor learning takes place in several stages:
Phase 1: gross coordination
Creating the initial ideas about the movement task, design flaws, the movement is very demanding on the mental and visual inspection, the result is generally imperfect movement with many errors. A high degree of mental and sight check.
Phase 2: fine coordination
The overall structure of motor skills gradually strengthens the proportion of conscious mental and visual inspection, the movement becomes more economical, temporal and dynamic parameters are stabilized, the individual begins to realize the movement as a whole.
Phase 3: stabilization (automation)
There is a stabilization of performance, the individual is able to perform movements without conscious control sequence of the resulting acts of physical movement, coordination of movements is a high-level, temporal and dynamic parameters are aligned, the result of movement in terms of performance is high.
Phase 4: variable creativity
High-acquired skills to creatively apply even in complex changing conditions. Some literature refers to the degree of sports mastery. This phase is achieved after many years of systematic training.
Sports training as a process of psycho-social interaction
Bred athlete has both individual and social dimension, it can be legitimately talk about training as a psychosocial process of interaction, i.e. the formation of the psyche of man and his behavior in the network of social relations.