The aims of this study were to investigate the effect of four different shooting techniques (slap, sweeper, drag, and wrist shots) in floorball on velocity and accuracy in experienced floorball players, and to investigate whether target height has an influence on these shooting performances. Ten experienced male floorball players (age, 21 ± 4 years; body mass, 81.5 ± 10 kg; body height, 1.85 ± 0.07 m; and years of experience, 6.9 ± 3.1 years) shot as hard as possible and tried to hit the upper and lower targets with four different shooting techniques from a 4-m distance. The main findings were that shooting techniques and target height could influence ball velocity in the expected way from slap to sweeper shots and drag to wrist shots, whereas accuracy did not change, and thereby, did not follow any velocity–accuracy trade-off like Fitts’ law.
Roland van den Tillaar and Gertjan Ettema
The aim of this study was to compare the kinematics in throwing with a regular weighted handball with 20% lighter and heavier balls in female experienced handball players. In total, eight joint movements during the throw were analyzed. The analysis consisted of maximal angles, angles at ball release, and maximal angular velocities of the joint movements and their timings during the throw. Results on 24 experienced female team handball players (mean age 18.2 ± 2.1 years) showed that the difference in ball weight affected the maximal ball velocity. The difference in ball release velocity was probably a result of the significant differences in kinematics of the major contributors to overarm throwing: elbow extension and internal rotation of the shoulder. These were altered when changing the ball weight, which resulted in differences in ball release velocity.
Roland van den Tillaar and Gertjan Ettema
The aim of this study was to investigate the contribution of upper extremity, trunk, and lower extremity movements in overarm throwing in team handball. In total, 11 joint movements during the throw were analyzed. The analysis consists of maximal angles, angles at ball release, and maximal angular velocities of the joint movements and their timing during the throw. Only the elbow angle (extension movement range) and the level of internal rotation velocity of the shoulder at ball release showed a significant relationship with the throwing performance. Also, a significant correlation was found for the timing of the maximal pelvis angle with ball velocity, indicating that better throwers started to rotate their pelvis forward earlier during the throw. No other significant correlations were found, indicating that the role of the trunk and lower limb are of minor importance for team handball players.
Roland van den Tillaar and Mário C. Marques
The purpose of this study was to determine whether two throwing programs, based upon velocity or resistance with the same workload, would enhance soccer overhead throwing velocity.
Sports science students (n = 64, age 21.1 ± 2.1 y, mass 71.1 ± 11 kg, height 1.75 ± 0.09 m; mean ± SD) divided into two groups matched on performance, participated in the study. The resistance-training group trained overhead throwing with a 5-kg medicine ball for two sets of 8 reps per session, whereas a velocity training group threw four sets of 16 reps with a regular soccer ball. These training programs were matched on workload. Throwing performance with a soccer ball and a 5-kg medicine ball were tested before and after a training period of 6 wk with two sessions per week.
Both groups significantly increased the throwing velocity with the soccer ball (resistance-training group: 3.2% [1.0–5.5%)]; P = .003 and velocity-training group: 5.1% [2.6–7.7%]; P < .001), whereas no substantial changes were found for throwing with the 5-kg medicine ball after the training period. No substantial differences between the groups were found, which indicates that both forms of training increased the throwing velocity.
It is concluded that both velocity and resistance throwing training programs after a short period of training with the same workload can increase throwing velocity and that workload is of importance in designing training programs and comparing them with each other.
Olav Raastad, Tore Kristian Aune, and Roland van den Tillaar
The aim of this study was to investigate if making the skill acquisition phase more difficult or easier would enhance performance in soccer juggling, and if this practice has a positive intertask transfer effect to ball reception performance. Twenty-two adolescent soccer players were tested in juggling a soccer ball and in the control of an approaching ball at a pre, post and retention test. The participants were randomly divided in a small ball size and bigger ball size training group that both trained four times per week for 6 weeks. At the post and retention test both groups enhanced performance in soccer juggling test with no difference between groups and no increase in ball reception performance at these tests. It was concluded that about intra task transfer and retention of soccer juggling skills, it does not matter if you increase (small balls) or decrease the difficulty (larger balls) when using the same amount of practice time within the skill acquisition phase in soccer juggling. In addition that for ball juggling and ball reception (inter task) these two tasks differ too much in afferent information and movement characteristics that no positive transfer between these two skills no positive intertask transfer can be expected.
Roland van den Tillaar, Erna von Heimburg, and Guro Strøm Solli
Purpose: To compare the assessment of the maximal oxygen consumption (VO2max) in a traditional graded exercise test (GXT) with a 1-km self-paced running test on a nonmotorized treadmill in men and women. Methods: A total of 24 sport-science students (12 women: age 23.7 [7.7] y, body height 1.68 [0.02] m, body mass 66.6 [4.3] kg; 12 men: 22.1 [3.1] y, body height 1.82 [0.06] m, body mass 75.6 [11.0] kg) performed a traditional GXT on a motorized treadmill and a 1-km self-paced running test on a nonmotorized treadmill. VO2max, blood lactate, heart rate, and rating of perceived exertion, together with running velocity and duration at each test, were measured. Results: The main findings of the study were that the 1-km test produced significantly higher VO2max values (53.2 [9.9] vs 51.8 [8.8] mL/kg/min ) and blood lactate concentrations (11.9 [1.8] vs 11.1 [2.2] mmol/L) than the GXT (F ≥ 4.8, P ≤ .04, η 2 ≥ .18). However, after controlling for sex, these differences were only present in men (60.6 [8.1] vs 58.1 [8.0] mL/kg/min , P = .027). Peak running velocity was higher in the GXT than in the 1-km test (15.7 [2.7] vs 13.0 [2.8] km/h). Men had higher VO2max values and running velocities than women in both tests. However, men and women used approximately similar pacing strategies during the 1-km test. Conclusions: Higher VO2max values were observed in a 1-km self-paced test than in the GXT. This indicates that a 1-km running test performed on a nonmotorized treadmill could serve as a simple and sport-specific alternative for the assessment of VO2max.
Rune K. Talsnes, Roland van den Tillaar, and Øyvind Sandbakk
Purpose: To compare the effects of increased load of low- versus high-intensity endurance training on performance and physiological adaptations in well-trained endurance athletes. Methods: Following an 8-week preintervention period, 51 (36 men and 15 women) junior cross-country skiers and biathletes were randomly allocated into a low-intensity (LIG, n = 26) or high-intensity training group (HIG, n = 25) for an 8-week intervention period, load balanced using the overall training impulse score. Both groups performed an uphill running time trial and were assessed for laboratory performance and physiological profiling in treadmill running and roller-ski skating preintervention and postintervention. Results: Preintervention to postintervention changes in running time trial did not differ between groups (P = .44), with significant improvements in HIG (−2.3% [3.2%], P = .01) but not in LIG (−1.5% [2.9%], P = .20). There were no differences between groups in peak speed changes when incremental running and roller-ski skating to exhaustion (P = .30 and P = .20, respectively), with both modes being significantly improved in HIG (2.2% [3.1%] and 2.5% [3.4%], both P < .01) and in roller-ski skating for LIG (1.5% [2.4%], P < .01). There was a between-group difference in running maximal oxygen uptake changes (P = .04), tending to improve in HIG (3.0% [6.4%], P = .09) but not in LIG (−0.7% [4.6%], P = .25). Changes in roller-ski skating peak oxygen uptake differed between groups (P = .02), with significant improvements in HIG (3.6% [5.4%], P = .01) but not in LIG (−0.1% [0.17%], P = .62). Conclusion: There was no significant difference in performance adaptations between increased load of low- versus high-intensity training in well-trained endurance athletes, although both methods improved performance. However, increased load of high-intensity training elicited better maximal oxygen uptake adaptations compared to increased load of low-intensity training.
Gertjan Ettema, Tommy Gløsen, and Roland van den Tillaar
The main purpose of this study was to compare the effect of a specific resistance training program (throwing movement with a pulley device) with the effect of regular training (throwing with regular balls) on overarm throwing velocity under various conditions.
The training forms were matched for total training load, ie, impulse generated on the ball or pulley device. Both training groups (resistance training n = 7 and regular training n = 6) consisted of women team handball players, and trained 3 times per week for 8 weeks, according to an assigned training program alongside their normal handball training.
An increase in throwing velocity with normal balls after the training period was observed for both groups (P = .014), as well as throwing with heavier balls and throwing like actions in the pulley device. Although the regular training group seemed to improve more (6.1%) in throwing velocity with normal balls than the resistance training group (1.4%), this difference was not statistically significant.
These findings indicate that resistance training does not surpass standard throwing training in improvement of overarm throwing velocity.
Guro Strøm Solli, Pål Haugnes, Jan Kocbach, Roland van den Tillaar, Per Øyvind Torvik, and Øyvind Sandbakk
Purpose: To compare the effects of a short specific and a long traditional warm-up on time-trial performance in cross-country skiing sprint using the skating style, as well as related differences in pacing strategy and physiological responses. Methods: In total, 14 (8 men and 6 women) national-level Norwegian cross-country skiers (age 20.4 [3.1] y; VO2max 65.9 [5.7] mL/kg/min) performed 2 types of warm-up (short, 8 × 100 m with gradual increase from 60% to 95% of maximal speed with a 1-min rest between sprints, and long, ∼35 min at low intensity, including 5 min at moderate and 3 min at high intensity) in a randomized order with 1 hour and 40 minutes of rest between tests. Each warm-up was followed by a 1.3-km sprint time trial, with continuous measurements of speed and heart rate. Results: No difference in total time for the time trial between the short and long warm-ups (199  vs 200  s; P = .952), or average speed and heart rate for the total course, or in the 6 terrain sections (all P < .41, η 2 < .06) was found. There was an effect of order, with total time-trial time being shorter during test 2 than test 1 (197  vs 202  s; P = .004). No significant difference in blood lactate and rating of perceived exertion was found between the short versus long warm-ups or between test 1 and test 2 at any of the measurement points during the test day (P < .58, η 2 > .01). Conclusions: This study indicates that a short specific warm-up could be as effective as a long traditional warm-up during a sprint time trial in cross-country skiing.
Mário C. Marques, Roland van den Tillaar, Jason D. Vescovi, and Juan José González-Badillo
The purpose of this study was to examine the relationship between ball-throwing velocity during a 3-step running throw and dynamic strength, power, and bar velocity during a concentric-only bench-press exercise in team-handball players.
Fourteen elite senior male team-handball players volunteered to participate. Each volunteer had power and bar velocity measured during a concentric-only bench-press test with 26, 36, and 46 kg, as well as having 1-repetition-maximum (1-RMBP) strength determined. Ball-throwing velocity was evaluated with a standard 3-step running throw using a radar gun.
Ball-throwing velocity was related to the absolute load lifted during the 1-RMBP (r = .637, P = .014), peak power using 36 kg (r = .586, P = .028) and 46 kg (r = .582, P = .029), and peak bar velocity using 26 kg (r = .563, P = .036) and 36 kg (r = .625, P = .017).
The results indicate that throwing velocity of elite team-handball players is related to maximal dynamic strength, peak power, and peak bar velocity. Thus, a training regimen designed to improve ball-throwing velocity in elite male team-handball players should include exercises that are aimed at increasing both strength and power in the upper body.