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Int J Sports Physiol Perform. 2008 Dec;3(4):439-53.

Neuromuscular and endocrine responses of elite players during an Australian rules football season.

Author information

1
School of Exercise, Biomedical and Health Sciences, Edith Cowan University, Joondalup, WA, Australia.

Abstract

PURPOSE:

To examine variations in neuromuscular and hormonal status and their relationship to performance throughout a season of elite Australian Rules Football (ARF).

METHODS:

Fifteen elite ARF players performed a single jump (CMJ1) and 5 repeated countermovement jumps (CMJ5), and provided saliva samples for the analysis of cortisol (C) and testosterone (T) before the season commenced (Pre) and during the 22-match season. Magnitudes of effects were reported with the effect size (ES) statistic. Correlations were performed to analyze relationships between assessment variables and match time, training load, and performance.

RESULTS:

CMJ1Flight time:Contraction time was substantially reduced on 60% of measurement occasions. Magnitudes of change compared with Pre ranged from 1.0+/-7.4% (ES 0.04+/-0.29) to -17.1+/-21.8% (ES -0.77+/-0.81). Cortisol was substantially lower (up to -40+/-14.1%, ES of -2.17+/-0.56) than Pre in all but one comparison. Testosterone response was varied, whereas T:C increased substantially on 70% of occasions, with increases to 92.7+/-27.8% (ES 2.03+/-0.76). CMJ1Flight time:Contraction time (r=.24+/-0.13) and C displayed (r=-0.16+/-0.1) small correlations with performance.

CONCLUSION:

The response of CMJ1Flight time:Contraction time suggests periods of neuromuscular fatigue. Change in T:C indicates subjects were unlikely to have been in a catabolic state during the season. Increase in C compared with Pre had a small negative correlation with performance. Both CMJ1Flight time:Contraction time and C may be useful variables for monitoring responses to training and competition in elite ARF athletes.

PMID:
19223670
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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