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Original articles  EXERCISE PHYSIOLOGY AND BIOMECHANICS 

The Journal of Sports Medicine and Physical Fitness 2004 March;44(1):15-22

Copyright © 2009 EDIZIONI MINERVA MEDICA

lingua: Inglese

Development and validation of a sport-specific exercise protocol for elite youth soccer players

Thatcher R. 1, Batterham A. M. 2

1 School of Life Sciences, Kingston University Kingston Upon Thames, UK 2 University of Bath, Bath, UK


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Aim. The ­aims of the cur­rent ­study ­were, first­ly, to quan­ti­fy the ­motion char­ac­ter­is­tics of pro­fes­sion­al ­youth soc­cer ­players and, sec­ond­ly, to devel­op and val­i­date a soc­cer-spe­cif­ic exer­cise pro­to­col (­SSEP).
Methods. The ­motion char­ac­ter­is­tics of 12 first ­team mem­bers and 12 schol­ars (­under 19s), ­signed to an English Premiership ­club ­were deter­mined via ­motion anal­y­sis. Motion pro­files ­from the anal­y­sis ­were ­then ­used to devel­op a ­SSEP for a non-mot­or­ised tread­mill. Validity of the pro­to­col was ­checked ­with 6, ­healthy, ­male soc­cer ­players who com­plet­ed the ­SSEP and, on a sep­ar­ate occa­sion, a soc­cer ­match. Heart ­rates ­were record­ed dur­ing ­both ­trials, in addi­tion, cap­il­lary ­blood and ­expired air sam­ples ­were tak­en, and RPE record­ed, dur­ing the ­SSEP.
Results. Youth ­team ­players cov­ered 10274±609 m, com­pared to 9741±882 m by the first ­team ­players (t=1.72, p>0.05; 95% CI for the dif­fer­ence = -1174 m to 109 m). The ­trend for great­er ­mean dis­tance cov­ered by ­youth ­players ­could be attrib­ut­ed to the dis­tanc­es cov­ered ­while jog­ging and run­ning. Mean ­heart ­rate ­response was 166±9 ­beats·min-1 dur­ing ­match ­play and 166±12 ­beats·min-1 dur­ing the ­SSEP (t=0.164, p>0.05). Mean V.O2 dur­ing the ­SSEP was 70±3% of V.O2max. Blood lac­tate con­cen­tra­tion ­fell ­from a ­mean val­ue of 5.37±1.15 ­mmol·L-1 dur­ing the ­first ­half to 4.74±1.25 ­mmol·L-1 dur­ing the 2nd ­half (t=2.52, p<0.05).
Conclusion. The find­ings of ­this ­study sug­gest ­that the pro­to­col devel­oped ­induced a sim­i­lar phys­io­log­i­cal ­load to soc­cer ­match ­play and pro­vides the oppor­tu­nity to ­study the phys­io­log­i­cal ­demands of soc­cer.

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