Match-to-match variation in physical activity and technical skill measures in professional Australian Football

Sports Medicine Australia
Publication Type:
Journal Article
Journal Of Science And Medicine In Sport, 2014, 18 (1), pp. 109 - 113
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Objectives To determine the match-to-match variability in physical activity and technical performance measures in Australian Football, and examine the influence of playing position, time of season, and different seasons on these measures of variability Design Longitudinal observational study. Methods Global positioning system (GPS), accelerometer and technical performance measures (total kicks, handballs, possessions and Champion Data rank) were collected from 33 players competing in the Australian Football League over 31 matches during 2011-2012 (N = 511 observations). The GPS data were categorised into total distance, mean speed (m·min-1), high-speed running (HSR, >14.4 km·h-1), very high-speed running (VHSR, >19.9 km·h-1), and sprint (>23.0 km·h-1) distance whilst player load was collected from the accelerometer. The data was log transformed to provide coefficient of variation (CV) and the between subject standard deviation (expressed as percentages). Results Match-to-match variability was increased for higher speed activities (HSR, VHSR, sprint distance, CV%: 13.3 - 28.6%) compared to global measures (speed, total distance, player load, CV%: 5.3 - 9.2%). The between-match variability was relativity stable for all measures between and within AFL seasons, with only few differences between positions. Higher speed activities (HSR, VHSR, sprint distance), but not mean speed, total distance nor player load, were all higher in the final third phase of the season compared to the start of the season.
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