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The Journal of Sports Medicine and Physical Fitness 2013 December;53(6):693-700

language: English

Assessment of power, speed, and agility in athletic, preadolescent youth

Jones M. T. 1, Lorenzo D. C. 2

1 Sports Medicine Assessment, Research and Testing (SMART) Laboratory, Division of Health and Human Performance George Mason University, Fairfax, VA, USA;
2 Department of Physical Education and Health Education, Springfield College Springfield, MA, USA


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Aim: The aim of this report was to assess power, speed, and agility in athletic, preadolescent youth, and determine how agility related to muscular strength and power.
Methods: Boys (N.=53) and girls (N.=104) completed vertical jump (VJ), standing long jump (SLJ), seated medicine ball throw (SMBT), proagility shuttle run (PRO), partial curl-ups (CURL), and 20 yd sprint (20 SP). One-way analysis of variance for gender comparison and multiple regression analysis for determining association among tests were used.
Results: No gender differences (P>0.05) existed for VJ or PRO. However, boys performed better on SLJ (P=0.03; 162.61+24.64 vs.154.51+20.78 cm), 20 SP (P=0.001; 3.70+0.35 vs. 3.96+0.33 s), and CURL (P=0.02; 35.16+9.67 vs. 31.48+8.80) while girls scored higher on SMBT (P=0.001; 340.46+68.58 vs. 287.12+56.39 cm). Among girls, PRO was correlated (P<0.01) with SLJ (r=-0.70) and VJ (r=-0.67). In boys, correlations (P<0.01) existed between VJ and SLJ (r=0.73) and 20 SP and PRO (r=0.72).
Conclusion: The current study supports previous research that found a correlation between SLJ and VJ. SLJ, VJ and SP were significant predictors of PRO, accounting for 55%, 46%, and 43% of the variation, respectively. The PRO agility test is easy to administer and requires lower body strength and power necessary for the quick changes in direction inherent to ground-based field sports. When designing a performance-related test battery for young athletes, PRO, SLJ, and VJ are effective measures and worthy of inclusion.

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mjones15@gmu.edu