The Cooper Institute

Founded in 1970 by the "Father of Aerobics"
Kenneth H. Cooper MD, MPH



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Aerobic Capacity

Aerobic capacity is evaluated using estimates of VO2max (also known as maximal oxygen uptake). VO2max reflects the maximum rate that the respiratory, cardiovascular, and muscular systems can take in, transport, and use oxygen during exercise. Good aerobic capacity (cardiorespiratory fitness) has been shown to reduce the risk of high blood pressure, coronary heart disease, obesity, diabetes, the metabolic syndrome, and some forms of cancer.

FitnessGram provides three field tests to assess aerobic capacity:

All Aerobic Capacity “Healthy Fitness Zone®" scores are reported as estimates of VO2max. Higher VO2max scores reflect a greater ability to take in and use oxygen and a greater potential to perform endurance exercise.