VO₂peak and running economy in female collegiate soccer players across a competitive season Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/graduate_thesis_or_dissertations/sq87bz618

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  • Running economy (RE) is the amount of oxygen utilized (ml.kg⁻¹min⁻¹) when running a fixed speed, and it has been demonstrated to be an important factor determining race performance in distance runners. There is evidence that running economy and/or maximal oxygen consumption (VO₂max) improves over the course of a training season in distance runners. However, little research has examined RE in high-level team sports that require athletes to cover large distances over the course of a competition. PURPOSE: To examine RE and VO₂max values across a season in female NCAA Division I soccer athletes. METHODS: Fourteen female soccer players from a Pacific Athletic Conference team completed pre-season and post-season aerobic testing on a motorized treadmill; 14 weeks separated the testing sessions. Players performed a combined RE/VO₂max test that consisted of a 3-minute warm-up at 6mph, two continuous 6-minute bouts at 7 mph and 8 mph, during which RE was assessed, and a final, continuous segment that maintained the treadmill velocity at 8 mph and increased treadmill incline by 2% the next minute and 1% each successive minute until volitional exhaustion was reached. Minute-average data was collected from exhaled air using a ParvoMedics TrueMax 2400 metabolic cart. RE was defined as the average of the oxygen uptake for the last three minutes of the 7 and 8 mph bouts. VO₂peak was determined with the highest one-minute average oxygen uptake value for each participant. RESULTS: Paired t-tests showed no significant differences between any of the RE or VO₂peak values from the pre-season and post-season test sessions. The mean subject height was 169.14 ± 3.37 cm. The mean body mass pre- and post-test was 63.83 ± 6.88 kg and 63.70 ± 6.60 kg, respectively. There was no difference between pre- and post-testing for RE at 7 mph or 8 mph, p > 0.05, (36.32 ± 1.40 ml.kg⁻¹min⁻¹ vs. 35.92 ± 1.23 ml.kg⁻¹min⁻¹ and 41.33 ± 1.27 ml.kg⁻¹min⁻¹ vs. 41.17 ± 1.75 ml.kg⁻¹min⁻¹). There was also no significant change in VO₂peak, p > 0.05, (46.19 ± 3.87 vs. 46.16 ± 4.54 ml.kg⁻¹min⁻¹). CONCLUSIONS: High-level soccer training and competition does not appear to elicit measurable changes in RE or VO₂peak over the course of a season.
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