The Increased Effectiveness of Loaded Versus Unloaded Plyometric Jump Training in Improving Muscle Power, Speed, Change of Direction, and Kicking-Distance Performance in Prepubertal Male Soccer Players

in International Journal of Sports Physiology and Performance
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Purpose: To examine the effects of loaded (LPJT) versus unloaded plyometric jump training (UPJT) programs on measures of muscle power, speed, change of direction (CoD), and kicking-distance performance in prepubertal male soccer players. Methods: Participants (N = 29) were randomly assigned to a LPJT group (n = 13; age = 13.0 [0.7] y) using weighted vests or UPJT group (n = 16; age = 13.0 [0.5] y) using body mass only. Before and after the intervention, tests for the assessment of proxies of muscle power (ie, countermovement jump, standing long jump); speed (ie, 5-, 10-, and 20-m sprint); CoD (ie, Illinois CoD test, modified 505 agility test); and kicking-distance were conducted. Data were analyzed using magnitude-based inferences. Results: Within-group analyses for the LPJT group showed large and very large improvements for 10-m sprint time (effect size [ES] = 2.00) and modified 505 CoD (ES = 2.83) tests, respectively. For the same group, moderate improvements were observed for the Illinois CoD test (ES = 0.61), 5- and 20-m sprint time test (ES = 1.00 for both the tests), countermovement jump test (ES = 1.00), and the maximal kicking-distance test (ES = 0.90). Small enhancements in the standing long jump test (ES = 0.50) were apparent. Regarding the UPJT group, small improvements were observed for all tests (ES = 0.33–0.57), except 5- and 10-m sprint time (ES = 1.00 and 0.63, respectively). Between-group analyses favored the LPJT group for the modified 505 CoD (ES = 0.61), standing long jump (ES = 0.50), and maximal kicking-distance tests (ES = 0.57), but not for the 5-m sprint time test (ES = 1.00). Only trivial between-group differences were shown for the remaining tests (ES = 0.00–0.09). Conclusion: Overall, LPJT appears to be more effective than UPJT in improving measures of muscle power, speed, CoD, and kicking-distance performance in prepubertal male soccer players.

Negra, Sammoud, and Nejmaoui are with Research Unit (UR17JS01), Sport Performance, Health & Society, Higher Inst of Sport and Physical Education of Ksar Saîd, University of “La Manouba,” Manouba, Tunisia. Chaabene, Prieske, and Granacher are with the Div of Training and Movement Sciences, Research Focus Cognitive Sciences, University of Potsdam, Potsdam, Germany. Moran is with the Dept of Sport, University Centre Hartpury (University of the West of England), Hartpury, Gloucestershire, United Kingdom. Ramirez-Campillo is with the Laboratory of Human Performance, Research Nucleus in Health, Physical Activity and Sport, GIAP in Quality of Life and Human Well-Being, Dept. of Physical Activity Sciences, Universidad de Los Lagos, Osorno, Chile.

Chaabene (chaabanehelmi@hotmail.fr) is corresponding author.Y. Negra and H. Chaabene have contributed equally.
International Journal of Sports Physiology and Performance
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