Positional Differences In The Most Demanding Scenarios Of External Load Variables In Elite Futsal Matches

Illa J., Fernandez D., Reche X., Serpiello F.R.

The aims of this study were to analyze the peak physical demands in elite futsal by quantifying the most demanding scenarios of match play and to identify the differences between playing positions (defenders, wingers, and pivots) and the seasonal trend for five different rolling average time windows (30, 60, 120, 180, and 300 s).

The most demanding scenarios of external load from distance, speed, acceleration, and deceleration variables were obtained from 14 elite futsal players using a local positioning system during 15 official matches in the premier Spanish Futsal League (2018–2019 season).

The results showed an extremely large effect of the time window for all dependent variables in all positional groups. Another important finding of this study was that, in regard to the seasonal trend, only defenders reported clear moderate-large positive trends for high-speed running (>18 km·h^-1) efforts, high-acceleration efforts, and high-deceleration efforts.

Finally, moderate-large individual differences in player means for all dependent variables and clear differences between games for most dependent variables were found, suggesting how likely contextual factors may exert an influence on how “demanding” the most demanding scenarios are.

The findings of this study provide coaches and strength and conditioning coaches further knowledge of the peak physical demands in elite futsal competition. This valuable information may lead to a more precise position-specific training prescription.

View this research