One-Repetition-Maximum Measures or Maximum Bar-Power Output: Which Is More Related to Sport Performance?

in International Journal of Sports Physiology and Performance
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Purpose: To compare the associations between optimum power loads and 1-repetition-maximum (1RM) values (assessed in half-squat and jump-squat exercises) and multiple performance measures in elite athletes. Methods: Sixty-one elite athletes (15 Olympians) from 4 different sports (track and field [sprinters and jumpers], rugby sevens, bobsled, and soccer) performed squat and countermovement jumps, half-squat exercise (to assess 1RM), half-squat and jump-squat exercises (to assess bar-power output), and sprint tests (60 m for sprinters and jumpers and 40 m for the other athletes). Pearson product–moment correlation test was used to determine relationships between 1RM and bar-power outputs with vertical jumps and sprint times in both exercises. Results: Overall, both measurements were moderately to near perfectly related to speed performance (r values varying from −.35 to −.69 for correlations between 1RM and sprint times, and from −.36 to −.91 for correlations between bar-power outputs and sprint times; P < .05). However, on average, the magnitude of these correlations was stronger for power-related variables, and only the bar-power outputs were significantly related to vertical jump height. Conclusions: The bar-power outputs were more strongly associated with sprint-speed and power performance than the 1RM measures. Therefore, coaches and researchers can use the bar-power approach for athlete testing and monitoring. Due to the strong correlations presented, it is possible to infer that meaningful variations in bar-power production may also represent substantial changes in actual sport performance.

Loturco, Kobal, and Pereira are with NAR—Nucleus of High Performance in Sport, São Paulo, Brazil. Suchomel is with the Dept of Human Movement Sciences, Carroll University, Waukesha, WI. Bishop is with the London Sport Inst, School of Science and Technology, Middlesex University, London, United Kingdom. McGuigan is with the Sports Performance Research Inst New Zealand (SPRINZ), Auckland University of Technology, Auckland, New Zealand, and the School of Medical and Health Sciences, Edith Cowan University, Perth, Australia.

Loturco (irineu.loturco@terra.com.br) is corresponding author.
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