The reliability, validity and sensitivity of a novel soccer-specific reactive repeated-sprint test (RRST)
The aim of this study was to determine the reliability, validity and sensitivity of a reactive repeated-sprint test (RRST).
Elite (n = 72) and sub-elite male (n = 87) and elite female soccer players (n = 12) completed the RRST at set times during a season. Total distance timed was 30 m and the RRST performance measure was the total time (s) across eight repetitions. Competitive match running performance was measured using GPS and high-intensity running quantified (≥19.8 km h−1).
Test–retest coefficient of variation in elite U16 and sub-elite U19 players was 0.71 and 0.84 %, respectively. Elite U18 players’ RRST performances were better (P < 0.01) than elite U16, sub-elite U16, U18, U19 and elite senior female players (58.25 ± 1.34 vs 59.97 ± 1.64, 61.42 ± 2.25, 61.66 ± 1.70, 61.02 ± 2.31 and 63.88 ± 1.46 s; ES 0.6–1.9). For elite U18 players, RRST performances for central defenders (59.84 ± 1.35 s) were lower (P < 0.05) than full backs (57.85 ± 0.77 s), but not attackers (58.17 ± 1.73 s) or central and wide midfielders (58.55 ± 1.08 and 58.58 ± 1.89 s; ES 0.7–1.4). Elite U16 players demonstrated lower (P < 0.01) RRST performances during the preparation period versus the start, middle and end of season periods (61.13 ± 1.53 vs 59.51 ± 1.39, 59.25 ± 1.42 and 59.20 ± 1.57 s; ES 1.0–1.1). Very large magnitude correlations (P < 0.01) were observed between RRST performance and high-intensity running in the most intense 5-min period of a match for both elite and sub-elite U18 players (r = −0.71 and −0.74), with the best time of the RRST also correlating with the arrowhead agility test for elite U16 and U18 players (r = 0.84 and 0.75).
The data demonstrate that the RRST is a reliable and valid test that distinguishes between performance across standard, position and seasonal period.
KeywordsFootball High-intensity Intense periods Fitness testing
Analysis of variance
Bangsbo sprint test
Blood lactate concentration
Coefficient of variation
Global positioning system
Heart rate maximum
Horizontal dilution of precision
Reactive repeated-sprint test
Repeated sprint ability
Smallest worthwhile change
Typical error of measurement
- Yo–Yo IR1
Yo–Yo intermittent recovery test level 1
- Yo–Yo IE2
Yo–Yo intermittent endurance test level 2
The University of Sunderland and Sunderland College for their help in funding Michele Di Mascio’s PhD.
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