Effects of a Very Congested Match Schedule on Body-Load Impacts, Accelerations, and Running Measures in Youth Soccer Players

Carling, C., Aoki, M.S., Arruda, A.F.S.

The aim of this study was to analyze the effects of a highly congested match schedule on various performance metrics in a team of under-15 soccer players during an international youth competition. The study involved 10 players with an average age of 15.1 years, height of 171.8 cm, and weight of 61 kg. Player performances were monitored using global positioning systems in five matches conducted over three consecutive days.

The results showed significant differences between matches for the frequency of accelerations per minute and body-load impacts (BLIs), but not for total distance covered, high-intensity running distance, or other related metrics. Interestingly, the frequency of accelerations per minute decreased over the course of the competition, while BLIs were higher during the final match compared to the others.

These findings suggest that metrics like BLIs and acceleration frequency may be more indicative of the external load experienced by players during congested match schedules than measures related to running speed or distance covered. This insight could be valuable for coaches and practitioners in managing player workload and optimizing performance during such demanding periods.

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