The Footbonaut as a new football-specific skills test: reproducibility and age-related differences in highly trained youth players

Publication Type:
Journal Article
Science and Medicine in Football, 2019, 3 (3), pp. 177 - 182
Issue Date:
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© 2018, © 2018 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group. Purpose: In sport, assessments are routinely administered to give an indication of performance. Assessing a skill requires external factors to dictate how and when the action is performed, highlighting the need for skill assessments to closely replicate the perception-action couplings experienced in football game play. Therefore, this study investigated if the Footbonaut is a valid and reliable football-specific skill assessment tool. Methods: Footbonaut performance scores from 152 male players from U12 to U23 representing a professional German Bundesliga club during the 2016/2017 season were analysed. Results: Pearson correlations (r) and coefficient of variation (CV) for the correct number of passes in a target (CV = 7.5–11.1; r = 0.48; p < 0.001), the speed at which they completed each trial (CV = 2.6–5.1; r = 0.70; p < 0.001), and a computer-generated point score (CV = 7.4–12.3; r = 0.77; p < 0.001) demonstrated acceptable test–retest reliability. Moreover, a MANOVA revealed a strong multivariate effect of age group on speed and accuracy combined (F = 7.80, p < 0.001, ES = 0.28), demonstrating the Footbonaut’s construct validity. Conclusion: The results in this study demonstrated that the Footbonaut is a valid and reliable assessment of football-specific skill.
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