The Influence of Physical Qualities on Activity Profiles of Female Australian Football Match Play

in International Journal of Sports Physiology and Performance
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Purpose: The transition of female Australian football (AF) players from amateur to semielite competitions has the potential for athletes to be underprepared for match play. To gain an understanding of the match demands of female football, the aims of this study were to highlight the physical qualities that discriminate selected and nonselected female AF players, investigate activity profiles of female AF players, and gain an understanding of the influence of physical qualities on performance in female AF Methods: Twenty-two female AF state academy players (mean [SD]: age = 23.2 [4.5] y) and 27 nonselected players (mean [SD]: age = 23.4 [4.9] y) completed a Yo-Yo intermittent recovery test level 1, countermovement jump, and 30-m sprint tests were completed prior to the competitive season. During 14 matches, players wore global positioning system units to describe the running demands of match play. Results: Selected players were faster over 30 m (ES = 0.57; P = .04) and covered greater distances on the Yo-Yo IR1 (ES = 1.09; P < .001). Selected midfielders spent greater time on the field and covered greater total distances (ES = 0.73–0.85; P < .01). Players faster over 5 m (r = −.612) and 30 m (r = −.807) and who performed better on the Yo-Yo IR1 (r = .489) covered greater high-speed distances during match play. Conclusions: An emphasis should be placed on the development of physical fitness in this playing group to ensure optimal preparation for the national competition.

Black, Johnston, and Cole are with the School of Exercise Science, Australian Catholic University, Brisbane, QLD, Australia. Gabbett is with Gabbett Performance Solutions, Brisbane, QLD, Australia, and the Inst for Resilient Regions, University of Southern Queensland, Ipswich, QLD, Australia. Naughton is with the School of Exercise Science, Australian Catholic University, Melbourne, VIC, Australia. Dawson is with the University of Western Australia, Perth, WA, Australia.

Black (georgia.black@acu.edu.au) is corresponding author.
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