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3.3 HEALTH SCIENCES, Sport and fitness sciences
The current investigation compared the effects of specific small-sided games training versus generic continuous aerobic training on team sport related exercise performances. Forty-eight hurling players (age: 25 ± 6.4 years; height: 180.2 ± 20.4 cm; mass: 80.5 ± 3.2 kg; V·O2max" role="presentation" style="display: inline; line-height: normal; word-spacing: normal; overflow-wrap: normal; white-space: nowrap; float: none; direction: ltr; max-width: none; max-height: none; min-width: 0px; min-height: 0px; border: 0px; padding: 0px; margin: 0px; position: relative;">V⋅O2maxV·O2max: 58.78 ± 3.05 ml·kg·min−1) completed either traditional continuous aerobic training (n = 24) or team sport-specific small-sided game training (n = 24), consisting of 4 × 4 min with 3-min active recovery periods completed twice per week. The following outcomes were measured at baseline (pre) and after 10 weeks (post): maximum oxygen uptake (ml·kg−1·min−1), running economy (ml·kg−1·min−1), maximal aerobic speed (km·h−1), Yo-Yo intermittent recovery test level 1 (m), Yo-Yo intermittent recovery test level 2 (m), repeated sprint ability (RSA; s), linear sprint speed over 5, 10 and 20 m (s) and counter-movement jump performance (cm). Training load was quantified by heart rate and rating of perceived exertion during all training sessions with no significant difference between groups (P = 0.12). Small-sided game (P = 0.002; d = 1.72; likely beneficial) had a likely beneficial effect for improving running economy (ml·kg−1·min−1) in contrast to the unclear effect for continuous training (P = 0.94; d = 0.21; unclear). Small-sided game (P = 0.04; d = 0.80; likely beneficial) had a likely beneficial effect for changes in RSAb (s) and RSAt (s) with these being in contrast to the likely negative effect for continuous training on similar measures (P = 0.12; d = −2.01; likely negative). Continuous training had a trivial (P = 0.72; d = 0.30; trivial) effect on Yo-Yo intermittent recovery test level 1 (m) performance in contrast to the likely beneficial effect seen for small-sided game (P = 0.002; d = 1.72; likely beneficial). Small-sided game (P = 0.001; d = 1.69; likely beneficial) resulted in a likely beneficial effect for Yo-Yo intermittent recovery test level 2 (m) performance with a likely negative effect for continuous training (P = 0.004; d = −2.40; likely negative). The current study suggests that small-sided games are a time efficient and effective method of improving fitness characteristics within hurling cohorts.
Malone, Shane & Hughes, Brian & Collins, Kieran. (2017). Are small-sided games an effective training methodology for improving fitness in hurling players? A comparative study of training methodologies. International Journal of Sports Science & Coaching. 12. 685-694. 10.1177/1747954117727887.