Long Sprint Abilities in Soccer: Ball vs Running Drills.


PURPOSE To examine the acute effects of generic (Running Drills, RD) and specific (Small-Sided Games, SSG) Long Sprint Ability (LSA) drills on internal and external load of male soccer-players. METHODS Fourteen academy-level soccer-players (mean±SD; age 17.6±0.61 years, height 1.81±0.63 m, body-mass 69.53±4.65 kg) performed four 30s LSA bouts for maintenance (work:rest, 1:2) and production (1:5) with RD and SSG drills. Players' external-load was tracked with GPS technology (20Hz) and heart-rate (HR), blood-lactate concentrations (BLc) and rate of perceived exertion (RPE) were used to characterize players' internal-load. Individual peak BLc was assessed with a 30s all-out test on a non-motorized treadmill (NMT). RESULTS Compared to SSGs the RDs had a greater effect on external-load and BLc (large and small, respectively). During SSGs players covered more distance with high-intensity decelerations (moderate-to-small). Muscular-RPE was higher (small-to-large) in RD than in SSG. The production mode exerted a moderate effect on BLc while the maintenance condition elicited higher cardiovascular effects (small-to-large). CONCLUSION The results of this study showed the superiority of generic over specific drills in inducing LSA related physiological responses. In this regard production RD showed the higher post-exercise BLc. Interestingly, individual peak blood-lactate responses were found after the NMT 30s all-out test, suggesting this drill as a valid option to RD bouts. The practical physiological diversity among the generic and specific LSA drills here considered, enable fitness trainers to modulate prescription of RD and SSG drills for LSA according to training schedule.

DOI: 10.1123/ijspp.2016-0565

Cite this paper

@article{Castagna2017LongSA, title={Long Sprint Abilities in Soccer: Ball vs Running Drills.}, author={Carlo Castagna and Lorenzo Francini and Susana C A P{\'o}voas and S D'ottavio}, journal={International journal of sports physiology and performance}, year={2017}, pages={1-22} }