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Ryo Yamanaka, Hayato Ohnuma, Ryosuke Ando, Fumiya Tanji, Toshiyuki Ohya, Masahiro Hagiwara, and Yasuhiro Suzuki

seasonal best time of elite junior long-distance runners was correlated with the cross-sectional area of the psoas major, which is directly related to sprinting ability. 9 Moreover, Tucker et al 10 showed a variation in running velocity during a world-record performance and reported that the final

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Martina A. Maggioni, Matteo Bonato, Alexander Stahn, Antonio La Torre, Luca Agnello, Gianluca Vernillo, Carlo Castagna, and Giampiero Merati

properly with strong evidence-based support. Ball-drills and repeated sprint ability training have begun to be widely used by coaches to improve physical fitness. 7 Ball-drills training consists of a series of short duration matches with a small number of players and which replicate match-like technical

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Paul Ritsche, Thomas Bernhard, Ralf Roth, Eric Lichtenstein, Martin Keller, Sabrina Zingg, Martino V. Franchi, and Oliver Faude

study to investigate the BFlh architecture and sprint ability in youth soccer players at the age of 12–15 years. We aimed to investigate the differences in BFlh anatomical cross-sectional area (ACSA), FL, and pennation angle (PA), and the sprint ability in circa-pubertal soccer players of different age

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Brian Dawson

Repeated-sprint ability (RSA) is now well accepted as an important fitness component in team-sport performance. It is broadly described as the ability to perform repeated short (~3–4 s, 20–30 m) sprints with only brief (~10–30 s) recovery between bouts. Over the past 25 y a plethora of RSA tests have been trialed and reported in the literature. These range from a single set of ~6–10 short sprints, departing every 20–30 s, to team-sport game simulations involving repeating cycles of walk-jog-stride-sprint movements over 45–90 min. Such a wide range of RSA tests has not assisted the synthesis of research findings in this area, and questions remain regarding the optimal methods of training to best improve RSA. In addition, how RSA test scores relate to player “work rate,” match performance, or both requires further investigation to improve the application of RSA testing and training to elite team-sport athletes.

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Carlo Castagna, Stefano D’Ottavio, Stefano Cappelli, and Susana Cristina Araújo Póvoas

for longer periods of time, in soccer players. 4 , 7 – 9 Recently, the speed endurance construct was replaced with the long sprint ability (LSA) concept, considered as more suitable in soccer training context. 4 The logical validity of LSA was supported by empirical descriptive studies that showed

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Michael C. Rumpf, John B. Cronin, Jon L. Oliver, and Michael Hughes

The primary purpose of this paper was to provide insight into the methodological issues and associated reliability of assessments used to quantify running sprint ability in youth athletes aged 8–18 years. Over-ground sprinting was the most reliable and common used choice of assessment to measure sprint performance of youth. In addition, the performance data of those athletes over distances ranging from 5 to 40 meters was collated from 34 published articles and tabulated with regards to the athlete’s chronological age. Torque or nonmotorized treadmills have been used to quantify sprint performance in youth with acceptable reliability, this technology providing deeper insight into sprint kinetics and kinematics; however there is limited performance data on youth using the torque and the nonmotorized treadmill. It is suggested that future research should use this technology in youth to better understand changes associated with growth, maturation and training.

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Achraf Ammar, Stephen J. Bailey, Omar Hammouda, Khaled Trabelsi, Nabil Merzigui, Kais El Abed, Tarak Driss, Anita Hökelmann, Fatma Ayadi, Hamdi Chtourou, Adnen Gharbi, and Mouna Turki

surface on repeated sprint ability (RSA) is equivocal. 13 , 14 , Playing surface has been shown to influence some variables, such as peak and average speed, 15 playing style, 10 and change of direction ability, 11 , 12 , 14 , with players also exhibiting better technical skills (eg, fewer sliding

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Matt Spencer, David Pyne, Juanma Santisteban, and Iñigo Mujika

Variations in rates of growth and development in young football players can influence relationships among various fitness qualities.

Purpose:

To investigate the relationships between repeated-sprint ability and other fundamental fitness qualities of acceleration, agility, explosive leg power, and aerobic conditioning through the age groups of U1 1 to U18 in highly trained junior football players.

Methods:

Male players (n = 119) across the age groups completed a fitness assessment battery over two testing sessions. The first session consisted of countermovement jumps without and with arm swing, 15-m sprint run, 15-m agility run, and the 20-m Shuttle Run (U11 to U15) or the Yo-Yo Intermittent Recovery Test, Level 1 (U16 to U18). The players were tested for repeated-sprint ability in the second testing session using a protocol of 6 × 30-m sprints on 30 s with an active recovery.

Results:

The correlations of repeated-sprint ability with the assorted fitness tests varied considerably between the age groups, especially for agility (r = .02 to .92) and explosive leg power (r = .04 to .84). Correlations of repeated sprint ability with acceleration (r = .48 to .93) and aerobic conditioning (r = .28 to .68) were less variable with age.

Conclusion:

Repeated-sprint ability associates differently with other fundamental fitness tests throughout the teenage years in highly trained football players, although stabilization of these relationships occurs by the age of 18 y. Coaches in junior football should prescribe physical training accounting for variations in short-term disruptions or impairment of physical performance during this developmental period.

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Jonathan L. Oliver, Craig A. Williams, and Neil Armstrong

The purpose of this study was to assess the reliability of a field and a laboratory test of repeated sprint ability (RSA). Twelve adolescent boys (15.3 ± 0.3 years) completed five trials of both a field RSA test (7 × 30 m sprints) and a laboratory RSA test (7 × 5 s sprints) performed on a nonmotorized treadmill. Mean coefficients of variation (CV) calculated across all trials were < 2.7% for field sprint times, and, in the laboratory, < 2.9% for velocity and < 8.4% for power output. Fatigue indices (FI) calculated from data in both environments exhibited mean CVs > 23%. The inconsistency in the FIs resulted from the mathematical procedures used in the FI calculation methods. Based on the reliability scores, it was concluded that results obtained from measured performance variables in the field and laboratory, and not calculated FIs, should be used to report RSA.

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Jon L. Oliver, Neil Armstrong, and Craig A. Williams

Purpose:

The purpose of the study was to assess the reliability and validity of a newly developed laboratory protocol to measure prolonged repeated-sprint ability (RSA) during soccer-specific exercise.

Methods:

To assess reliability, 12 youth soccer players age 15.2 ± 0.3 y performed 2 trials of a soccer-specific intermittent-exercise test (SSIET) separated by 3 months. The test was performed on a nonmotorized treadmill. A separate sample of 12 youth soccer players (15.2 ± 0.3 y) completed the SSIET while simultaneously HR, VO2, and blood lactate (BLa) were monitored. The SSIET was designed to replicate the demands of competing in one half of a soccer match while sprint performance was monitored. The test included a 5-s sprint every 2 min.

Results:

The mean coefficient of variation was 2.5% for the total distance covered during the SSIET and 3.8% for the total distance sprinted; measures of power output were less reliable (>5.9%). Participants covered 4851 ± 251 m during the SSIET, working at an average intensity of 87.5% ± 3.2% HRpeak and 70.2% ± 3.1% VO2peak, with ~7mmol/L BLa accumulation. A significant reduction (P < .05) in sprint performance was ob served over the course of the SSIET.

Conclusion:

The SSIET provided a reliable method of assessing prolonged RSA in the laboratory. The distance covered and the physiological responses during the SSIET successfully recreated the demands of competing in a soccer match.