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Establishing Running Intensities of Elite Field Hockey Players During Competitive Match-Play

The IUSCA Journal is the world's first in S&C and Sport Science to be 100% Free to submit, publish and read. We have a new article now in Community Review by Arian Forouhandeh. Please help take part in the review process by clicking the link below to the Journal and then access the pdf.

Establishing Running Intensities of Elite Field Hockey Players During Competitive Match-Play

by Arian Forouhandeh Wolverhampton Wanderers FC

Keywords: Hockey, GPS, rolling average, high-speed running


Field hockey requires players to perform at varying intensities throughout a competitive match, involving high-speed running combined with tactical skills in order to outscore the opposition. A greater understanding of specific running demands imposed by competitive match-play may aid coaches in appropriate prescription of training and adequate recovery programmes. Purpose: to determine peak duration- and position-specific running intensities during field hockey competition, using a rolling average method. Methods: twenty one elite male field hockey players were analysed through 15Hz Global Positioning System (GPS) technology across a 16 match competitive season. Peak values for relative distance (m·min-1) and high-speed distance (m·min-1) were calculated, placed in a velocity-time curve and analysed using a rolling average method across ten different durations (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10 min) for each playing position. Results: Forwards and midfielders covered significantly (p < 0.05) more relative distance than defenders for averages 1 to 6, with the forwards covering the greatest maximum relative distance and high-speed relative distance. There was a substantial decrease in relative distance and high-speed distance as the length of the rolling average increased, presenting small to moderate differences between durations 4 to 10 min, with the magnitude of differences between lengths decreasing as the rolling average length increased. Conclusion: These findings suggest that match-play running demands are significantly more intense than previously reported for all positions. As forwards exhibited a greater running intensity throughout, position specific training drills should replicate the most demanding phases of field hockey competition.

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