Between-game variation of physical soccer performance measures in highly trained youth soccer players

Greg Doncaster, Viswanath Unnithan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

1 Citation (Scopus)
105 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Doncaster, G and Unnithan, V. Between-game variation of physical soccer performance measures in highly trained youth soccer players. J Strength Cond Res 33(7): 1912-1920, 2019-To assess the between-game variation in measures of physical performance during 11 vs. 11 soccer match play, over a short period, in highly trained youth soccer players. A single-cohort, observational, study design was used. Physical match performance data were collected from 17, male, highly trained, youth soccer players (age, 13.3 ± 0.4 years) over 3, 2 × 20 minutes, 11 vs. 11 matches. Using 10-Hz global positioning systems, the variables selected for analyses were total distance (TD), high-speed running (HSR), very high-speed running (VHSR), number of high-speed running efforts (HSReff), and number of very high-speed running efforts (VHSReff). Match data were also separated into cumulative 5-minute epochs, to identify the peak 5-minute epoch and the mean of the cumulative 5-minute epochs for each match. Variability was quantified using the coefficient of variation (CV), standard error of measurement, and intraclass correlation coefficient. Between- and within-player smallest worthwhile changes (SWC) were also calculated for each variable to aid in the interpretation of the data. Analysis of the variance between games reported a low CV for TD (3.8%) but larger CVs for HSR (33.3%), HSReff (35.4%), and VHSR and VHSReff (59.6 and 57.4%, respectively). Analysis of 5-minute epochs (peak and average) found an increase in the CVs beyond that of the values reported for the whole match. Between-player SWC in high-intensity physical performance data ranged from 24.7 to 42.4%, whereas within-player SWC ranged from 1.2 to 79.9%. The between-game variability of high-intensity and very high-intensity activities in youth soccer players, across 3 soccer matches over a short period (2 weeks), is relatively "large" and specific to the individual, thus highlighting the need for caution when interpreting physical performance data between games and players.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1912-1920
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Strength & Conditioning Research
Volume33
Issue number7
Early online date12 Jul 2017
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 12 Jul 2017

Keywords

  • Match-play
  • reliability
  • variation
  • GPS analysis
  • youth soccer

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