Home > Journals > The Journal of Sports Medicine and Physical Fitness > Past Issues > The Journal of Sports Medicine and Physical Fitness 2001 September;41(3) > The Journal of Sports Medicine and Physical Fitness 2001 September;41(3):337-41



To subscribe PROMO
Submit an article
Recommend to your librarian




Original articles   

The Journal of Sports Medicine and Physical Fitness 2001 September;41(3):337-41


language: English

Physiological profile of very young soccer players

Bunc V., Psotta R.

From the Sport Research Laboratory Faculty of Physical Education and Sports Charles University, Prague, Czech Republic


Background. There is ­still ­much uncer­tain­ty and ­debate sur­round­ing the phys­io­log­i­cal require­ments of com­pet­i­tive soc­cer. The coach­ing empha­sis on ­skill devel­op­ment, defi­cien­cies in fit­ness train­ing, con­ser­va­tive train­ing meth­ods ­lead to dif­fi­cul­ty in the sci­en­tif­ic ­study of soc­cer.
Methods. The phys­io­log­i­cal pro­files of 22 ­young soc­cer ­players (­mean age = 8.0±0.3 ­years, ­body ­mass = 28.2±3.2 kg, ­body ­height = 132.4±4.3 cm and ­body fat = 19.4±1.6%) ­were meas­ured by the incre­men­tal exer­cise pro­to­col on the tread­mill ­with 5% incli­na­tion. All ­boys system­at­i­cal­ly ­trained at ­least 2 ­years ­with a min­i­mum of two train­ing ­units per ­week. During presea­son, ­they ­trained two ­times per ­week, and dur­ing the com­pet­i­tive sea­son ­they ­trained at ­least ­three ­times and com­pet­ed in one or two ­games per ­week.
Results. Mean V.O2max·kg-1 was 56.7±4.9 ml·kg-1·min-1. Mean val­ue of max­i­mal run­ning ­speed on a tread­mill ­with 5% of incli­na­tion was 12.0±0.9 km·h-1. Mean val­ues of Rmax = 1.11±0.07. The select­ed func­tion­al var­i­ables at the ven­til­a­to­ry thresh­old (VT) lev­el cor­re­spond­ed to V.O2·kg-1 = 42.9±5.0 ml·kg-1·min-1, ­mean val­ues of %V.O2max·kg-1 at VT lev­el ­were 76.5±1.3%, ­mean ­speed of run­ning was 10.5±1.2 km·h-1, ­mean val­ues of %­Vmax at VT lev­el ­were 87.5±1.9%. The ­mean of ener­gy ­cost of run­ning was 4.28±0.19 J·kg-1·m-1. According to our ­results, we can con­clude ­that the phys­io­log­i­cal char­ac­ter­is­tics of ­young soc­cer ­players ­about 8 ­years old ­should be as fol­lows: V.O2max·kg-1 high­er ­than 55 ml·kg-1·min-1 in defend­ers, and high­er ­than 60 ml·kg-1·min-1, in mid­field­ers and for­wards. Maximal ­speed of run­ning on the tread­mill ­with 5% of incli­na­tion ­should be high­er ­than 12 km·h-1 in all ­players, the run­ning ­speed at “anaer­o­bic thresh­old” (5%) high­er ­than 10.5 km·h-1, %V.O2max at “anaer­o­bic thresh­old” lev­el high­er ­than 77.0%, and the ener­gy ­cost of run­ning low­er ­than 4.20 J·kg-1·m-1.
Conclusions. As in oth­er ­sports ­where ­skills ­play a deci­sive ­role, the phys­io­log­i­cal ­data can­not be the ­sole pre­dic­tor of com­pet­i­tive suc­cess. On the oth­er ­hand, we ­must ­note ­that ­these phys­io­log­i­cal ­norms and stan­dards are nec­es­sary con­di­tions for suc­cess in ­high lev­els of soc­cer com­pe­ti­tion. The ­norms ­play deci­sive ­role in tal­ent selec­tion.

top of page