Weekly Load Variations of Distance-Based Variables in Professional Soccer Players: A Full-Season Study
Clemente, Filipe Manuel
Los Arcos Larumbe, Asier
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International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health 17(9) : (2020) // Article ID 3300
The aim of this study was two-fold: (1) to analyze the variations of acute load, training monotony, and training strain among early (pre-season), mid (first half of season), and end season (second half of season) periods; (2) to compare these training indicators for playing positions in different moments of the season. Nineteen professional players (age: 26.5 ± 4.3 years; experience as professional: 7.5 ± 4.3 years) from a European First League team participated in this study. The players were monitored daily over a 45-week period for the total distance (TD), distance covered (DC) at 14 km/h−1 or above (DC > 14 km/h), high-speed running above 19.8 km/h−1 (HSR) distance, and number of sprints above 25.2 km/h−1. The acute load (sum of load during a week), training monotony (mean of training load during the seven days of the week divided by the standard deviation of the training load of the seven days), and training strain (sum of the training load for all training sessions and matches during a week multiplied by training monotony) workload indices were calculated weekly for each measure and per player. Results revealed that training monotony and training strain for HSR were meaningfully greater in pre-season than in the first half of the in-season (p ≤ 0.001; d = 0.883 and p ≤ 0.001; d = 0.712, respectively) and greater than the second half of the in-season (p ≤ 0.001; d = 0.718 and p ≤ 0.001; d = 0.717). The training monotony for the sprints was meaningfully greater in pre-season than in the first half of in-season (p < 0.001; d = 0.953) and greater than the second half of in-season (p ≤ 0.001; d = 0.916). Comparisons between playing positions revealed that small-to-moderate effect sizes differences mainly for the number of sprints in acute load, training monotony, and training strain. In conclusion, the study revealed that greater acute load, training monotony, and training strain occurred in the pre-season and progressively decreased across the season. Moreover, external defenders and wingers were subjected to meaningfully greater acute load and training strain for HSR and number of sprints during the season compared to the remaining positions.
Except where otherwise noted, this item's license is described as 2020 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/).