Effects of 10-Week Soccer-Specific Functional Training Program on Sports Performance Indices in Young Male Players
Objective: This randomized controlled trial aimed to investigate the effects of 10-week soccer-specific functional training (SSFT) program based on functional capacity concept on sports performance indices.
Methods: Twenty-seven young male soccer players with a functional movement screen score of at least 14 were randomly allocated into a control group (CG, n=13) and experimental group (EG, n=14). The CG continued only their regular soccer training. For EG, 3 sessions of SSFT were weekly introduced in their soccer training for 10-week. SSFT program included strength, balance, core, plyometrics, speed and agility exercises as well as the soccer-specific drills. Measurements consisted of the sprint, agility, power, balance, strength, best and average time of Shuttle-sprint and Dribble Test (SDT). ANCOVA was used for statistical analysis (P<0.05).
Results: From the pre-test to post-test, EG compared to CG decreased significantly time in 30-m test, Arrowhead test and average SDT (P<0.001). Similarly, the improvement amount for the countermovement-jump test, YBT-LQ, and 1RM tests were significantly greater (P<0.001) in EG than in CG.
Conclusion: This study showed that SSFT program in combination with regular soccer training designed based on similarity and context principle of exercises induced general and specific sports performance improvements in young male players.