Concept: Association football
There is growing concern around the effects of concussion and sub-concussive impacts in sport. Routine game-play in soccer involves intentional and repeated head impacts through ball heading. Although heading is frequently cited as a risk to brain health, little data exist regarding the consequences of this activity. This study aims to assess the immediate outcomes of routine football heading using direct and sensitive measures of brain function.
This study examined the effectiveness of an applied mental skills training (MST) intervention utilizing mental skills to enhance intrinsic sources of enjoyment (ISOEs) as a means of promoting self-confidence, motivational style, and athletic performance, while also decreasing trait anxiety. The intervention project was designed to increase intrinsic SOE using a systematic and individualized mental training protocol, and then examine its relationships to mental skills and soccer performance. A Division 1 collegiate women’s soccer team was randomly assigned to treatment (n = 8) and control (n = 11) groups, equally distributed by academic year, position, and pre-season coach-evaluated starters and non-starts. Results revealed that the MST intervention significantly increased intrinsic enjoyment targeted psychological and competitive outcomes, both in practice and competition within the treatment group as compared to the control group. This study’s support for the impact mental skills training may have had on ISOEs, as well as other psychosocial outcomes and athletic performance can serve to highlight a mental skill often overlooked by consultants and coaches.
Recurrent hamstring injuries are a major problem in sports such as football. The aim of this paper was to use a clinical example to describe a treatment strategy for the management of recurrent hamstring injuries and examine the evidence for each intervention. A professional footballer sustained five hamstring injuries in a relatively short period of time. The injury was managed successfully with a seven-point programme-biomechanical assessment and correction, neurodynamics, core stability, eccentric strengthening, an overload running programme, injection therapies and stretching/relaxation. The evidence for each of these treatment options is reviewed. It is impossible to be definite about which aspects of the programme contributed to a successful outcome. Only limited evidence is available in most cases; therefore, decisions regarding the use of different treatment modalities must be made by using a combination of clinical experience and research evidence.
Soccer balls are typically constructed from 32 pentagonal and hexagonal panels. Recently, however, newer balls named Cafusa, Teamgeist 2, and Jabulani were respectively produced from 32, 14, and 8 panels with shapes and designs dramatically different from those of conventional balls. The newest type of ball, named Brazuca, was produced from six panels and will be used in the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil. There have, however, been few studies on the aerodynamic properties of balls constructed from different numbers and shapes of panels. Hence, we used wind tunnel tests and a kick-robot to examine the relationship between the panel shape and orientation of modern soccer balls and their aerodynamic and flight characteristics. We observed a correlation between the wind tunnel test results and the actual ball trajectories, and also clarified how the panel characteristics affected the flight of the ball, which enabled prediction of the trajectory.
Does adding a post-training Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) 11+ exercise program to the pre-training FIFA 11+ injury prevention program reduce injury rates among male amateur soccer players?
To systematically review the scientific level of evidence for the ‘Top 3’ risk factors, screening tests and preventative exercises identified by a previously published survey of 44 premier league football (soccer) teams. Also, to provide an overall scientific level of evidence and graded recommendation based on the current research literature.
Groin injuries cause major problems in the football codes, as they are prevalent and lead to prolonged symptoms and high recurrence. The aim of the present study was to describe the occurrence and clinical presentation of groin injuries in a large cohort of sub-elite soccer players during a season.
The aim of this study was to define and categorise different styles of play in elite soccer and associated performance indicators by using factor analysis. Furthermore, the observed teams were categorised using all factor scores. Data were collected from 97 matches from the Spanish La Liga and the English Premier League from the seasons 2006-2007 and 2010-2011 using the Amisco® system. A total of 19 performance indicators, 14 describing aspects of attacking play and five describing aspects of defensive play, were included in the factor analysis. Six factors, representing 12 different styles of play (eight attacking and four defensive), had eigenvalues greater than 1 and explained 87.54% of the total variance. Direct and possession styles of play, defined by factor 1, were the most apparent styles. Factor analysis used the performance indicators to cluster each team’s style of play. Findings showed that a team’s style of play was defined by specific performance indicators and, consequently, teams can be classified to create a playing style profile. For practical implications, playing styles profiling can be used to compare different teams and prepare for opponents in competition. Moreover, teams could use specific training drills directed to improve their styles of play.
Abstract The keeper-independent strategy, in which a football penalty kicker selects a target location in advance and ignores the goalkeeper’s actions during the run-up, has been suggested to be the preferable strategy for taking a penalty kick. The current in-field experiment investigated the question of whether the goalkeeper can indeed be ignored. Ten intermediate-level football players were instructed to adopt a goalkeeper-independent strategy and to perform penalty kicks directed at one of two targets located in the upper corners of the goal under three conditions: without a goalkeeper, in the presence of a goalkeeper (who tried to save the ball), and in the presence of a goalkeeper who was informed by the penalty kickers where they intended to direct the ball. The mere presence of a goalkeeper impaired shot accuracy. The shots were more centralised, that is, biased toward the goalkeeper. The effects were enhanced for the condition in which the penalty kicker knew the goalkeeper was knowledgeable about ball direction. The findings were consistent with the response activation model that holds that aiming at a target can be biased toward salient visual non-targets. The implications for adopting and practising goalkeeper-independent strategies are discussed.
Energy Intake and Expenditure of Professional Soccer Players of the English Premier League: Evidence of Carbohydrate Periodization
- International journal of sport nutrition and exercise metabolism
- Published over 2 years ago
In an attempt to better identify and inform the energy requirements of elite soccer players, we quantified the energy expenditure (EE) of players from the English Premier League (n=6) via the doubly labeled water method (DLW) over a 7-day in-season period. Energy intake (EI) was also assessed using food diaries, supported by the remote food photographic method and 24 h recalls. The 7-day period consisted of 5 training days (TD) and 2 match days (MD). Although mean daily EI (3186 ± 367 kcals) was not different from (P>0.05) daily EE (3566 ± 585 kcals), EI was greater (P<0.05) on MD (3789 ± 532 kcal; 61.1 ± 11.4 kcal.kg(-1) LBM) compared with TD (2956 ± 374 kcal; 45.2 ± 9.3 kcal.kg(-1) LBM, respectively). Differences in EI were reflective of greater (P<0.05) daily CHO intake on MD (6.4 ± 2.2 g.kg(-1)) compared with TD (4.2 ± 1.4 g.kg(-1)). Exogenous CHO intake was also different (P<0.01) during training sessions (3.1 ± 4.4 g.h(-1)) versus matches (32.3 ± 21.9 g.h(-1)). In contrast, daily protein (205 ± 30 g.kg(-1), P=0.29) and fat intake (101 ± 20 g.kg(-1), P=0.16) did not display any evidence of daily periodization. Although players readily achieve current guidelines for daily protein and fat intake, data suggest that CHO intake on the day prior to and in recovery from match play was not in accordance with guidelines to promote muscle glycogen storage.