To measure peak velocity in soccer, let players sprint: Peak velocity in soccer

Efthymios Kyprianou*, Valter Di Salvo, Lorenzo Lolli, Hani Al Haddad, Alberto Mendez-Villanueva, Warren Gregson, Matthew Weston

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

Expressing externals loads relative to a player’s individual capacities has potential to enhance understanding of dose-response. Peak velocity is an important metric for the individualisation process and is usually measured during a sprint test. Recently however, peak velocity was reported to be faster during soccer matches when compared to a 40-m sprint test. With the aim of developing the practice of individualised training prescription and match evaluation, we examined whether the aforementioned finding replicates in a group of elite youth soccer players across a broader range of soccer activities. To do this, we compared the peak velocities of 12 full-time male youth soccer players (age 16.3 ± 0.8 years) recorded during a 40-m sprint test with peak velocity recorded during their routine activities (matches, sprints, skill-based conditioning drills: small sided games [SSG], medium sided games [MSG], large sided games [LSG]). All activities were monitored with 10-Hz global positioning systems (Catapult Optimeye S5, version 7.32) with the highest speed attained during each activity retained as the instantaneous peak velocity. Interpretation of clear between-activity differences in peak velocity was based on non-overlap of the 95% confidence intervals for the mean difference between activities with sprint testing. Peak velocity was clearly faster for sprint test (8.76 ± 0.39 m⋅s–1) when compared to matches (7.94 ± 0.49 m⋅s–1), LSG (6.94 ± 0.65 m⋅s–1), MSG (6.40 ± 0.75 m⋅s–1), and SSG (5.25 ± 0.92 m⋅s–1), but not sprints (8.50 ± 0.36 m⋅s–1). Our data show the necessity for 40-m sprint testing to determine peak velocity.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)273-276
Number of pages4
JournalThe Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research (JSCR)
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 13 Jan 2022

Keywords / Materials (for Non-textual outputs)

  • maximal sprinting speed
  • GPS
  • training prescription
  • match analysis
  • team sports


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