Validity and reliability of a unique aerobic field test for estimating VO2max among basketball players

Main Article Content

Roni Gottlieb
Asaf Shalom
Pedro Emilio Alcaraz
Julio Calleja-González


This study aimed at developing and validating an innovative field test for measuring the aerobic capacity of basketball players during games. Such capacity is necessary for recovering from high frequency anaerobic actions such as sprinting and continuing to perform well. To recover, the body must rebuild its creatine phosphate reserve and emit accumulated phosphate in very short periods of time. The participants included 21 male basketball players on an elite youth league in Israel, aged 16.4 years on average. In addition to participating in the proposed test (Yo-Yo Recovery Test for Basketball Players) twice (test/re-test), the players also performed three previously validated tests (Bruce Protocol Stress Test, Yo-Yo Intermittent Recovery Level 1 Test, and Yo-Yo Endurance Test). For each test, the players’ time and distance covered were documented, as were their maximum oxygen consumption and heartrate during recovery, and their perceived level of exertion. Our findings indicate the validity and reliability of the proposed aerobic field test for basketball players. Moreover, the test requires shorter times and distances for obtaining results than the other three tests. As such, this tool could be highly beneficial for basketball coaches in creating optimal training programs and game plans for each individual player and for the entire team.

Article Details

How to Cite
Gottlieb, R., Shalom, A., Alcaraz, P. E., & Calleja-González, J. (2022). Validity and reliability of a unique aerobic field test for estimating VO2max among basketball players. Scientific Journal of Sport and Performance, 1(2), 112–123.
Performance Analysis of Sport and Physical Conditioning
Author Biographies

Roni Gottlieb, Wingate Institute

School of Human Movement and Sport Sciences. The Academic College at Wingate.

Pedro Emilio Alcaraz, Catholic University of Saint Anthony

UCAM Research Center for High Performance Sport. The Faculty of Sport Science.

Julio Calleja-González, University of the Basque Country

Physical Education and Sport Department. Faculty of Education and Sport University of the Basque Country.


Abdelkrim, N. B., El Fazaa, S., & El Ati, J. (2007). Time motion analysis and physiological data of elite under 19 years old B players during competition. British Journal of Sports Medicine, 24, 2330-2342. DOI:

Akalan, C., Kravitz, L., & Robergs, R. (2004). V̇O2max: Essentials of the most widely used test in exercise physiology. ACSM's Health & Fitness Journal, 8(3), 5-9. DOI:

Bangsbo, J., Marcello, I., & Krustrup, P. (2012). The Yo-Yo Intermittent Recovery Test: A useful tool for evaluation of physical performance in intermittent sports. Sports Medicine, 38, 37–51. DOI:

Borg, G. (1998). Borg’s Perceived Exertion and Pain Scales. Human Kinetics.

Bruce, R. A., Pearson, R., Lovejoy, F. W., Jr. Yu, P. N. G., & Brothers, G. B. (1949). Variability of respiratory and circulatory performance during standardized. The Journal of Clinical Investigation, 28(6), 1431-1438. DOI:

Calleja-González, J., Terrados, N., Mielgo-Ayuso, J., Delextrat, A., Jukic, I., Vaquera, A., Torres, L., Schelling, X., Stojanovic, M., & Ostojic, S. M. (2016). Evidence-based post-exercise recovery strategies. The Physician and Sports Medicine, 44(1),74-78. DOI:

Calleja-González J., Mielgo-Ayuso, J., Sampaio, J., Delextrat, A., Ostojic, SM., Marques-Jiménez, D., Arratibel, I., Sánchez-Ureña, B., Dupont, G., Schelling, X., Ter-rados N. (2018). Brief ideas about evidence-based recovery in team sports. Journal of Exercise Rehabilitation, Aug 24;14(4):545-550. DOI:

Calleja-Gonzalez, J., Mielgo-Ayuso, J.M., Lekue, J.A., Leibar, X., Erauzkin, J., Jukic, I., Ostojic, S.M., Ponce González, J.G., Fuentes Azpiroz, M., Terrados, N. (2018). Anthropometry and performance of top youth international male basketball players in spanish national academy. Nutrición Hospitalaria, VOL 35, NÚM. 6, nov-dec, 1331-1331. DOI:

Castagna, C., Grant, A., Vincenzo, M., Giueseppe, A., Evira, P., & Stefano, D. (2008). Effect of recovery mode on repeated sprint ability in young basketball players. Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, 22, 1-7. DOI:

Figueira, T. R., Caputo, F., Machado, C. E. P., & Denadai, J, B. S. (2008). Aerobic fitness level typical of elite athletes is not associated with even faster VO2 kinetics during cycling exercise. Journal of Sports Science & Medicine, 7(1), 132-138. DOI:

Freitas, T.T., Martinez-Rodriguez, A., Calleja-González, J., Alcaraz, P.E. (2017). Short-term adaptations following complex training in team-sports: A meta-analysis. PLoS One, 12(6), e0180223. DOI:

Freitas T.T., Calleja-González, J., Carlos-Vivas, J., Marín-Cascales, E., & Alcaraz, P. E. (2019). Short-term optimal load training vs a modified complex training in semi-professional basketball players. Journal of Sports Sciences, 37(4), 434-442. DOI:

Giavarina, D. (2015). Understanding Bland Altman analysis. Biochemia Medica, 25(2), 141-5. DOI:

Goodie, J. L., Larkin, K. T., & Schauss, S. (2000). Validation of the Polar Heart Rate Monitor for assessing heart rate during physical and mental stress. Journal of Psychophysiology, 14(3), 159-164. DOI:

Hawkins, M. N., Raven, P. B., Snell, P. G., Stray-Gundersen, J., & Levine, B. D. (2007). Maximal oxygen uptake as a parametric measure of cardiorespiratory capacity. Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise, 38(11), 103-107. DOI:

Hopkins, W. G., Marshall, S. W., Batterham, A. M. , & Hanin, J (2009). Progressive statistics for studies in sports medicine and exercise science Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise, 41(1), 3-13. DOI:

Krustrup, P., Mohr, M., Amstrup, T., Ryasgaard, T., Johansen, J., Steensberg, A., Pedersen, P. K., & Bangsbo, J. (2003). The Yoyo Intermittent Recovery Test: Physiological response, reliability, and validity. Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise, 35(4), 697-705. DOI:

Léger, L. A. , D Mercier, C Gadoury, (1988). The multistage 20 meter shuttle run test for aerobic fitness. Journal of Sports Sciences, 6(2), 93-101. DOI:

Lu, M. J., Zhong, W. H., Liu, Y. X., Miao, H. Z., Li, Y. C., & Ji, M. H. (2016). Sample Size for Assessing Agreement between Two Methods of Measurement by Bland-Altman Method. The International Journal of Biostatistics, 12(2). DOI:

Mancha-Triguero, D., García-Rubio, J., Calleja-González, J., Ibáñez, S. J. (2019). Physical fitness in B players: A systematic review. The Journal of Sports Medicine 59(9), 1513-1525. DOI:

Marinkovic, & Pavlović. (2013). The differences in aerobic capacity of basketball players in different playing positions‏. Physical Education and Sport, 11(1), 73-80.

Meckel, Y., Gottlieb, R., & Eliakim, A. (2009a). Repeated sprint tests in young basketball players at different game stages. European Journal of Applied Physiology, 107, 273-279. DOI:

Meckel, Y., Machnai, O., & Eliakim, A. (2009b). Relationship among repeated sprint test, aerobic fitness and anaerobic fitness in elite adolescent soccer players. Journal of Strength Conditioning Research, 23, 163-169. DOI:

Padulo, J., Bragazzi, N. L., Nikolaidis, P. T., Dello Iacono, A., Attene, G., Pizzolato, F., Dal Pupo, J., Zagatto, A. M., Oggianu, M., & Migliaccio, G. M. (2016). Repeated sprint ability in young basketball players: Multi-direction vs. one-change of direction (Part 1). Frontiers in Physiology, 7(133), 1-12. DOI:

Petway, A. J., Freitas, T. T., Calleja-González, J., Leal, D. M., & Alcaraz P. E. (2020). Training load and match-play demands in basketball based on competition level: A systematic review. PLoS One 15(3):e0229212. DOI:

Petway, A. J., Freitas, T. T., Calleja-González, J., Torres-Ronda, L., & Alcaraz, P. E. (2021). Front sports act living. seasonal variations in game activity profiles and players' neuromuscular performance in collegiate Division I Basketball: Non-conference vs. conference tournament. Frontiers in Sports and Active Living, 21. DOI:

Gottlieb, R. Shalom, A., & Calleja-Gonzalez, J. (2021). Physiology of Basketball – Field Tests. Review Article. Journal of Human Kinetics, 77(1), 159-167. DOI:

Stolen, T., Chamari, K., Castagna, C., & Wisloff, U. (2005). Physiology of Soccer: An update. Sports Medicine, 35, 501-536. DOI:

Stone, N. (2007). Physiological response to sport-specific aerobic interval training in high school male basketball players. Auckland University of Technology.

St. Clair Gibson, A., Broomhead, S., & Lambert, M. I. (1998). Prediction of maximal oxygen uptake from a 20 m shuttle run as measured directly in runners and squash players. Journal of Sports Sciences, 16(4), 331-335. DOI:

Stojanovic, M. D., Ostojic, S.M., Calleja-González, J., Milosevic, Z., & Mikic, M. (2012). Correlation between explosive strength, aerobic power and repeated sprint ability in elite basketball players. Journal of Sports Medicine and Physical Fitness, 52(4), 375-81.

World Medical Association. (2013). Declaration of Helsinki: Ethical principles for medical research involving human subjects. JAMA, 310(20), 2191-2194. DOI:

Wragg, C. B., Maxwell, N. S., & Doust, J. H. (2000). Evaluation of the reliability and validity of a soccer specific field test of repeated sprint ability. European Journal of Applied Physiology, 83, 77-83. DOI: