THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN LOWER LIMB POWER AND 40 METRE SPRINT PERFORMANCE IN MALE UNIVERSITY RUGBY UNION PLAYERS
Cardiff Metropolitan University
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The relationship between lower limb power and sprint performance has been previously researched, with somewhat varied results. Researchers have identified that peak and average power (PP and AP), as well as peak and average power relative to body weight (PP/BW and AP/BW) produced during jumping exercises, have a significant correlation to sprint performance over short distances. However there are gaps in the research, particularly in lower level populations Fifteen male university rugby union players (aged 20.5 ± 2.5 years; stature 176.5 ± 17.5cm; body mass 104.5 ± 29.4kg) were assessed for measures of leg strength (squat one repetition maximum – S1RM), power (jump squats with loads of 0-60% S1RM - JS), and finally sprint performance (40m sprint). The results found that all PP, PP/BW, AP/BW, PV and AV during all JS’s did not show any significant correlations to sprint ability during sprints. AP during JS at 0% S1RM was significantly correlated (p<0.05) to sprints over 20, 30 and 40m; as was AP during JS at 20% S1RM with sprints over 20 and 40m. PP during JS at 0% S1RM was significantly correlated (p<0.05) with split times of 10-20 and 30-40m; PP during JS 20% S1RM was also correlated with split time 10-20m. Split time between 10-20m correlated (p<0.05) with AP at all 0, 20, 40 and 60% S1RM additionally split time 30-40m was significantly correlated (p<0.05) with AP during JS’s at 0 and 20% S1RM. This indicates that AP during SJ’s of lower resistance has the greatest relation to sprint performance particularly during split time of 10-20m within a male university rugby union population. Further research should seek to identify the relationship between muscular contraction velocity and sprint performance within specific sporting populations. Furthermore investigations into the relation of jumping exercises at varied loads with separate phases of sprint performance.
DEGREE OF BACHELOR OF SCIENCE (HONOURS) SPORT CONDITIONING, REHABILITATION AND MASSAGE
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