By Mike Tuchscherer
If you don’t know what TRAC is, you should definitely check out the information on it here.This article will focus on how to execute the required tests to get your TRAC score.
TRAC consists of three tests: The Orthostatic Test, the Reaction Time test, and the Tap Test.All tests are performed in that order first thing when you wake up in the morning. The first test we’ll discuss is the Orthostatic Test. This test seems to be the most difficult, but it’s really not hard once you get the hang of it. There are two versions of the test; the test for those with a heart rate monitor and a test for those without a heart rate monitor.
The Orthostatic Test (with a HR monitor)
I suggest that if you have a HR monitor, you spend some time with it to familiarize yourself with the basic functions of your particular monitor. You will need the following capabilities to perform the TRAC orthostatic test:
Average HR over a period of time
Time elapsed (a stopwatch feature)
After you have familiarized yourself with how your heart rate monitor works, try performing the test once or twice to get used to the procedure. This way, it’s no big deal when you perform it for real. You want to be relaxed when performing the actual test.
To perform the Orthostatic test, first lay on the floor on your back for 1 minute. This is to allow your heart rate to damp out a bit. After the first minute, as you lie there start your HR Monitor.Lay still and try to think of nothing. You stay here for 2 more minutes – use the stopwatch feature on your HR monitor to watch the time.
At the end of this 2 minute period, you find your average heart rate. This is HR1 and you need to remember this number.
Start your watch recording again. Now stand up. Watch your current HR after you are standing. It will climb up to a peak. Note the peak number – This is HR2. After it peaks, it will fall steadily for a short period of time. Note the lowest point that it falls to before it begins to climb back up – This is HR3.
At this point, you should switch back to your stopwatch view. For most people, HR2 and HR3 will occur within 20-45 seconds of standing. So continue to watch the stopwatch until it reaches 1 minute.
Now stop the watch and start it again as you remain standing. Allow it to record for one full minute and note the Average HR over that minute. This is HR4. The reason you stop it and start it again is so you don’t include the HR2/HR3 minute in HR4.
At this point, the test is complete and you enter the values in the TRAC data entry page.
Orthostatic Test (without HR monitor)
If you don’t have a HR monitor, you can still perform the orthostatic test. The report it generates is still reliable, it will just include somewhat less information. If you don’t have a HR monitor, you will not be able to get HR2 or HR3 readings. Thus your test will be solely for HR1 and HR4.
In this test, you lie on the floor on your back for two minutes. This is to allow your heart rate to damp out a bit before the reading begins. At the end of two minutes, you need to find your pulse (on the wrist is preferable) and count the number of heartbeats for one minute. This number is HR1.
At this point stand up and remain standing for 1 minute. After this minute has elapsed, find your pulse again. Count the number of heartbeats for another minute. This is HR4.
Now your test is complete. Put your HR1 and HR4 numbers in the appropriate spaces in the TRAC data entry page.
These are pretty self-explanatory. Just go through each question and select the answer that most describes you right now. Soreness questions are divided up by grouping (legs, upper body “push” muscles, upper body “pull” muscles). There is really nothing more to explain with these questions since they are so simple.
And there you have it. After performing these two tests, submit the data entry page and you will get your TRAC report!
|About the Author
Mike Tuchscherer is the owner and head coach at RTS. He has been powerlifting since 2001 and since has traveled all over the world for competitions. In 2009, he was the first man from USA powerlifting to win a gold medal at the World Games – the highest possible achievement in powerlifting. He has coached over a dozen competitors at the world championships, a score of national champions, and multiple world record holders.