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Purpose:

This investigation aimed to quantify the typical variation for kinetic and kinematic variables measured during loaded jump squats.

Methods:

Thirteen professional athletes performed six maximal effort countermovement jumps on four occasions. Testing occurred over 2 d, twice per day (8 AM and 2 PM) separated by 7 d, with the same procedures replicated on each occasion. Jump height, peak power (PP), relative peak power (RPP), mean power (MP), peak velocity (PV), peak force (PF), mean force (MF), and peak rate of force development (RFD) measurements were obtained from a linear optical encoder attached to a 40 kg barbell.

Results:

A diurnal variation in performance was observed with afternoon values displaying an average increase of 1.5–5.6% for PP, RPP, MP, PV, PF, and MF when compared with morning values (effect sizes ranging from 0.2–0.5). Day to day reliability was estimated by comparing the morning trials (AM reliability) and the afternoon trials (PM reliability). In both AM and PM conditions, all variables except RFD demonstrated coefficients of variations ranging between 0.8–6.2%. However, for a number of variables (RPP, MP, PV and height), AM reliability was substantially better than PM. PF and MF were the only variables to exhibit a coefficient of variation less than the smallest worthwhile change in both conditions.

Discussion:

Results suggest that power output and associated variables exhibit a diurnal rhythm, with improved performance in the afternoon. Morning testing may be preferable when practitioners are seeking to conduct regular monitoring of an athlete’s performance due to smaller variability.

Kristie-Lee Taylor is with the Department of Physiology, Australian Institute of Sport, Belconnen, ACT, Australia, and the School of Exercise, Biomedical and Health Sciences, Edith Cowan University, Joondalup, Western Australia, Australia.John Cronin is with the School of Exercise, Biomedical and Health Sciences, Edith Cowan University, Joondalup, Western Australia, Australia, and the Institute of Sport and Recreation Research New Zealand, AUT University, Auckland, New Zealand.Nicholas D. Gill is with the Institute of Sport and Recreation Research New Zealand, AUT University, Auckland, New Zealand.Dale W. Chapman is with the Department of Physiology, Australian Institute of Sport, Belconnen, ACT, Australia, and the School of Exercise, Biomedical and Health Sciences, Edith Cowan University, Joondalup, Western Australia, Australia.Jeremy Sheppard is with the Department of Physiology, Australian Institute of Sport, Belconnen, ACT, Australia, and the School of Exercise, Biomedical and Health Sciences, Edith Cowan University, Joondalup, Western Australia, Australia.