Any kind of car racing requires mental and physical fitness. Many people dismiss F1 and GT racing as being physically demanding, but it is obvious that drivers need to be fit to compete at the highest level.
Driver fitness programs can include strength training, heat acclimatization, and flexibility training. Many different exercises can be combined into a program that trains drivers to perform at their best.
We will discuss the importance of fitness training for racing drivers, and then go through some examples of the various types. We will then show you some examples of workouts to give an idea of what top racers expect in terms of fitness training.
Also check– Jim Wendler 531 Forever pdf
The Particulars of Fitness Requirements for Motorsport
Although there has been constant debate about whether race drivers can be considered athletes, there is plenty of evidence to support this. This includes the many physical and mental skills needed to balance, coordinate, heart health, muscular endurance, muscular strength, flexibility, and mental training strategies.
Focus & Composure
Drivers need to be able to adapt to racing conditions. Mental strength is essential to keep calm and focus. Drivers must train hard to be strong in all areas, including the neck.
It is not only difficult for sports car drivers to manage a variety of equipment from GT (Grand Touring)cars to LMP (Le Mans Prototype)cars. But it is also extremely challenging to drive these cars in races such as the 24 Hours of Le Mans.
Circuit Training Exercises For Race Car Drivers
You can set up a program of structured training that focuses on different exercises and targets all areas of the driver’s fitness. It is important to review their progress monthly, taking into account the event commitments of each athlete.
Below is Ryan Hunter-Reay’s exercise program before he won the Indy 500 in 2014.
[Repeat circuit below 4-5 times]
1. Chest Press with Incline Dumbbell
Resistance: Keep one arm/dumbbell raised while you work on the other side. Alternately, work your arms.
Explanation: Place yourself on a flat bench, face down. The dumbbells should be at a 90 degree angle of flexion at the elbow and shoulders. Push dumbbells fully up, extending the arms outwards. Then return to the original position of 90 degrees. Perform 1 set flat, 1 Set 45 degrees, 2 Sets High Incline, 2 Sets Full Shoulder Press (bench at nearly 90 degrees) for each circuit. This is a Bamboo Strength Barbell. Regular Barbell can also work.
2. Kettlebell Stabilization Rows
Explanation: This exercise can be done from a bridged position while stabilizing the non target side. This will engage all sides of your body and activate different muscles. For the required number of repetitions, alternate sides of your body.
3. Side-to-Side Med Ball Rotations
Resistance: By holding a dumbbell at its ends and turning it (as in steering), you can force your arms and shoulders to work. In workouts, alternate the medicine ball and the dumbbell.
Explanation: With your torso slightly back, sit up as shown in the video (seat position for IndyCar). Keep your hips forwards and rotate to the other side for the required reps. To simulate the steering wheel activity in your forearm muscles, flip your hands. To get lower abs, raise your legs.
4. Driving drills and leg and ankle stability
Explanation: Stand on a Bosu upside-down or use the Terracore upside-down. While performing image drills that simulate driving a lap under loading, activate your legs and ankles.
5. Straight TRX Crunch
Resistance: Wear TRX straps on your feet to support your feet
Explanation: The abs are used to pull the feet into the chest. However, the upper torso stabilizes the upper body.