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J Sports Med Phys Fitness. 2003 Mar;43(1):14-20.

Test performance indicators from a single soccer specific fitness test differentiate between highly trained and recreationally active soccer players.

Author information

1
Physical Education and Sport, School of Education, Reading University, Reading, UK. a.m.edwards@reading.ac.uk

Abstract

AIM:

The aim of this study was to investigate whether a single soccer specific fitness test (SSFT) could differentiate between highly trained and recreationally active soccer players in selected test performance indicators.

METHODS:

SUBJECTS:

13 Academy Scholars (AS) from a professional soccer club and 10 Recreational Players (RP) agreed to participate in this study. Test 1--VO(2) max was estimated from a progressive shuttle run test to exhaustion. Test 2--The SSFT was controlled by an automated procedure and alternated between walking, sprinting, jogging and cruise running speeds. Three activity blocks (1A, 2A and 3A) were separated by 3 min rest periods in which blood lactate samples were drawn. The 3 blocks of activity (Part A) were followed by 10 min of exercise at speeds alternating between jogging and cruise running (Part B).

RESULTS:

Estimated VO(2) max did not significantly differ between groups, although a trend for a higher aerobic capacity was evident in AS (p<0.09). Exercising heart rates did not differ between AS and RP, however, recovery heart rates taken from the 3 min rest periods were significantly lower in AS compared with RP following blocks 1A (124.65 b x min(-1) +/-7.73 and 133.98 b x min(-1) +/-6.63), (p<0.05) and 3A (129.91 b x min(-1) +/-10.21 and 138.85 b x min(-1) +/-8.70), (p<0.01). Blood lactate concentrations were significantly elevated in AS in comparison to RP following blocks 2A (6.91 mmol x l(-1) +/-2.67 and 4.74 mmol x l(-1) +/-1.28) and 3A (7.18 mmol x l(-1) +/-2.97 and 4.88 mmol x l(-1) +/-1.50), (p<0.05). AS sustained significantly faster average sprint times in block 3A compared with RP (3.18 sec +/-0.12 and 3.31 sec +/-0.12), (p<0.05).

CONCLUSION:

The results of this study show that highly trained soccer players are able to sustain, and more quickly recover from, high intensity intermittent exercise.

PMID:
12629457
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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