Within-match playerload™ patterns during a simulated soccer match: Potential implications for unit positioning and fatigue management

S. Barrett, A.W. Midgley, C. Towlson, A. Garrett, M. Portas, R. Lovell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (journal)peer-review

78 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: To assess the acute alterations in triaxial accelerometry (PlayerLoad [PL VM ]) and its individual axial planes (anteroposterior PlayerLoad [PL AP ], mediolateral PlayerLoad [PL ML ], and vertical PlayerLoad [PL V ]) during a standardized 90-min soccer match-play simulation (SAFT 90 ). Secondary aims of the study were to assess the test-retest reliability and anatomical location of the devices. Methods: Semiprofessional (n = 5) and university (n = 15) soccer players completed 3 trials (1 familiarization, 2 experimental) of SAFT 90 . PlayerLoad and its individual planes were measured continuously using micromechanical-electrical systems (MEMS) positioned at the scapulae (SCAP) and near the center of mass (COM). Results: There were no between-halves differences in PL VM ; however, within-half increases were recorded at the COM, but only during the 1st half at the SCAP. Greater contributions to PL VM were provided by PLV and PLML when derived from the SCAP and COM, respectively. PL VM (COM 1451 ± 168, SC AP 1029 ± 113), PL AP (COM 503 ± 99, SC AP 345 ± 61), PL ML (COM 712 ± 124, SC AP 348 ± 61), and PLV (COM 797 ± 184, SC AP 688 ± 124) were significantly greater at the COM than at the SC AP . Moderate and high test-retest reliability was observed for PlayerLoad and its individual planes at both locations (ICC.80-.99). Conclusions: PlayerLoad and its individual planes are reliable measures during SAFT90 and detected within-match changes in movement strategy when the unit was placed at the COM, which may have implications for fatigue management. Inferring alterations in lower-limb movement strategies from MEMS units positioned at the SCAP should be undertaken with caution.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)135-140
JournalInternational Journal of Sports Physiology and Performance
Issue number1
Early online date1 Jan 2016
Publication statusPublished - 2016


  • playerload
  • fatigue management


Dive into the research topics of 'Within-match playerload™ patterns during a simulated soccer match: Potential implications for unit positioning and fatigue management'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this