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The Journal of Sports Medicine and Physical Fitness 2016 September;56(9):997-1006


language: English

Tactical swimming activity and heart rate aspects of youth water polo game

Corrado LUPO 1, Laura CAPRANICA 2, Giovanni CUGLIARI 3, Miguel A. GOMEZ 4, Antonio TESSITORE 2

1 Motor Science Research Center, School of Exercise & Sport Sciences (SUISM), Department of Medical Sciences, University of Turin, Turin, Italy; 2 Division of Human Movement and Sport Sciences, Department of Movement, Human and Health Sciences, University of Rome Foro Italico, Rome, Italy; 3 Unit of Medical and Genomic Statistics, Department of Brain and Behavioural Sciences, University of Pavia, Pavia, Italy; 4 Faculty of Physical Activity and Sport Sciences, Polytechnic University of Madrid, Madrid, Spain


BACKGROUND: Although physical demands could differently occur during particular phases of the youth water polo game, at present, literature lacks of time-motion and heart rate data referred to specific tactical situation. Therefore, the present study aimed to analyze a youth water polo game, specifying heart rate, and swimming activity aspects in relation to game situations.
METHODS: Twenty-six youth male players (15.6±0.5 years old) voluntary played a friendly game, which was tactically analyzed (offensive and defensive Even and Counterattack situation, and Power-play, Inferiority and Game Breaks) using notational analysis procedures. Successively, the heart rate (aerobic, anaerobic) and time motion (horizontal, vertical, and duel swimming patterns, with and without ball possession, backstroke) analyses were applied only to six (3 for team) players because they performed at list half of the total game duration. The tactical scenarios were mainly characterized by offensive (33%) and defensive (33%) even possessions, and game breaks (23%).
RESULTS: No effect emerged between situations in terms of heart rate distribution, because it principally resulted as aerobic (range: 58-97%). The swimming activity analysis mainly showed differences (P≤0.05) between offensive counterattack and power-play in terms of distance (1 min of game, single pattern), time duration (1 min of game), and speed (single pattern) related to the horizontal activity. Repeated high intensity activities were performed 3.0±2.8 (range: 1-7) during the game.
CONCLUSIONS: The findings of the present study provide important information for the planning of youth water polo training, with specific reference to playing situations.

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