We are looking for the fittest people in the world

Are You Elite?

The ELITE study is an international collaboration aimed at discovering the genetic determinants of physical fitness in the world’s most elite endurance athletes. We hope to distinguish the role of genetic predisposition from environmental factors such as training.

ELITE: Exercise at the Limit, Inherited Traits of Endurance

Participate from Wherever You Are!

Participation in the ELITE Study takes up to 15 minutes and can be done entirely remotely (i.e. from the comfort of your own home)! Click on the “Enroll in the study now!” button below to get started.

We are recruiting athletes from all over the globe who are successful in endurance sports. To qualify, you must have a lifetime highest VO2max of 55+ mL/min/kg for women and 65+ men. We will ask participants to read and sign a consent form, provide a saliva sample and answer questionnaires regarding basic information such as height, weight, VO2max and health status. We are also looking for collaborators to help with recruitment across the US and the world. Find more information about joining the study as a participant or a collaborator here.

Our Vision

The ELITE study aims to characterize the genetic determinants of human performance by studying the upper extreme of the distribution. We seek individuals with extremely high maximum oxygen uptake (VO2max), defined as >65 ml/kg/min for men and >55 ml/kg/min for women. We are looking for the fittest people in the world.

More About Our Vision


Connect with us on social media!

Join our Strava Club to connect with other athletes who support the ELITE Study.

You can also click here to find instructions to spreading the word online. Or head straight to the buttons below to follow us on instagram and access our social media materials!


Wu Tsai Human Performance Alliance

Our research is supported by the Stanford Wu Tsai Human Performance Alliance, a collaborative research initiative that seeks to improve the health and well-being of all people through the study of peak human performance. The Wu Tsai Human Performance Alliance is an interdisciplinary effort made up of six primary hubs leading cutting edge research to advance this field of study and translate it into practice in sports medicine and beyond. The six hubs include Stanford University, Boston Children’s Hospital, The University of Kansas, University of Oregon, the Salk Institute, and University of California San Diego.

Get Engaged

We invite faculty, students, staff, alumni, friends, and external organizations to participate in the ELITE Study at Stanford.

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