The Genetics of Athletics: Reach Your Potential

Have you ever heard someone say – “That athlete’s a natural! It must be in his/her DNA.” – meaning that the athlete’s impressive ability is a result of their genetics. And while “natural talent” still requires dedicated training and skill development, there is a world of genetic information contained within an athlete’s DNA that predisposes them to respond to different types of training in predictable ways. Therefore, it begs the question, if the genetic information is known, how can it be used to alter triathlon training for optimal performance for any athlete at any performance level?  

That’s exactly what the TriDot team has been pursuing, and now we’re excited to launch our industry-disrupting genetics module, PhysiogenomiX (genetically optimized triathlon training), so that our athletes can leverage powerful genetic insights in their training and competition.

GENETICS CAN AFFECT TRAINING?

Scientists have known for decades that there is a direct relationship between an athlete’s genetic predisposition and their performance ability and that, at a more granular level, genetics has a significant impact on such factors as an athlete’s training response, aerobic potential, recovery rate, and injury predisposition.  

In pursuit of TriDot’s ongoing mission to delivering the sport’s most comprehensive, efficient, and effective triathlon training, we’ve achieved something no one else has: included genetics into triathlon training through genome analysis, historical data, predictive analytics, and artificial intelligence. We can now deliver this increased level of insight and optimization to the training plans of athletes of all ages and performance levels.

After analyzing your genetic profile through your genome data, PhysiogenomiX uses the detailed results of more than two dozen genes and leverages TriDot’s powerful nSight Engine to offer unparalleled triathlon training optimization. Utilizing genetic data to optimize triathlon training further delivers on TriDot’s promise of better results in less time with fewer injuries. 

HOW DOES THE PROCESS WORK?

The first step in reaching your genetic potential is knowing what your genetic potential is. Athletes order a DNA collection kit and submit their genetic samples for genotyping to 23andMe or Ancestry.com. 

They then download their raw genome file from 23andMe or Ancestry.com and upload it to TriDot, who analyzes the variants in an athlete’s genome to optimizes the athlete’s training.

HOW DO YOU ADAPT YOUR TRAINING FROM YOUR GENETIC PROFILE?

Knowing your genetic makeup and its potential effects and using that information to optimize your training are two different things. TriDot uses the knowledge of your genetic disposition to alter your training in these critical areas:

Training Intensity Response influences your training emphasis and improvement expectations, especially related to differences between training above your functional (aerobic) threshold versus at or below it. With an in-depth understanding of your genetic/physiological profile, the proper emphasis and expectations can be utilized to ensure that training time and intensities are optimized to achieve improvements that are the most beneficial to overall performance.

Aerobic Potential influences how quickly and to what degree you are able to increase your aerobic fitness. This can impact improvement-rate expectations used when optimizing training focus and periodization of training blocks in both short and long training phases.

Recovery Rate primarily influences training intensity and frequency, specifically with regard to higher intensity sessions. It can be used proactively when prescribing training to help ensure your planned sessions don’t include more training stress than you have time to recover from before your next high-intensity session. Recovery rate can also impact how much time is required to taper for or recover from a race.

Injury Predisposition primarily influences training intensity and volume, specifically related to high-intensity sessions and rates of increasing volume and long session durations. It can also influence the type of warm-up drills and strength training routines that contain high-impact, ballistic movements. 

WHAT ARE THE POSSIBILITIES?

The intelligence we now have from genetic data has a huge impact on predicting and analyzing outcomes from training and racing, optimizing training, and managing injury risk and recovery. It’s never been done before at this level.

TriDot is not just making recommendations based on athletes’ genetics, we’re actually using their genetic data to optimize their training. That means we’re able to more precisely prescribe training for your and better analyze results. We’ve been able to give our athletes far better results than they could otherwise achieve for some time now. The inclusion of genetics into training optimization takes it to another level.

You can find out more about at PhysiogenomiX at www.tridot.com/genetics

About Jeff Booher:

Jeff Booher is the founder and CEO of TriDot, a training optimization application that is becoming the obvious and automatic choice for triathlon training. TriDot uses athlete’s biometrics, genetics, and training data; more than a decade and a half of data from tens of thousands of triathletes; and its own proprietary big data, advanced analytics, and artificial intelligence to design and optimize training for individuals of all ages, backgrounds, and performance levels. 

U.S. patents pending. Trademarks of Predictive Fitness, LLC include TriDot, TrainX, RaceX, EnviroNorm, and IronIndex.

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