The Relationship between Pre-Season Testing Performance and Playing Time among NCAA Division II Men’s Soccer Athletes Over a Competitive Season: A Pilot Analysis.
Soccer requires a myriad of physiological abilities, such as aerobic capacity, linear speed, change of direction ability, and lowerbody power.1-5 Preceding investigations have investigated some of
these physiological attributes, uncovering differences between elite and non-elite and starters and non-starters.6-8 In short, these findings suggest that elite soccer players display higher levels of physiological capacity (e.g. maximal oxygen uptake (VO2 max), linear speed), while starters possess significantly greater lower body explosiveness (e.g. mean and peak velocity and jump height). Specific to collegiate soccer, understanding the underpinning physiological components for athletic competition is an important practice of collegiate strength and conditioning coaches.
However, what is less known is if these measures correlate with on-field performance, or if they are a requisite for on field success. As such, recent investigations in men’s basketball, women’s soccer10 and across men’s and women’s collegiate athletic programs12 have begun to examine if physiological fitness relates to on-field performance. One way to determine on-field performance
and success may be to investigate playing time. This is particularly important because oftentimes performance is associated with playing time. As such, understanding if playing time correlates with
physiological testing may provide insight into training practices in order to optimize training protocols for an upcoming season.
Therefore, the purpose of this study was to investigate the relationships between pre-season testing performance and playing time among Division II men’s soccer players. We hypothesized that significant relationships would exist between playing time and lower body power, change of direction speed, linear speed and aerobic capacity.
Sport Exerc Med Open J. 2019; 5(2): 30-35. doi: 10.17140/SEMOJ-5-173