Quincy R. Johnson1, Shane Stock2, Dalton Gleason2, Conor McNally1, Kazuma Akehi2, Dayton Sealey2, Clay Frels2, Yang Yang1, Dimitrije Cabarkapa1, & Andrew C. Fry1, FACSM

1University of Kansas, Lawrence, Kansas; 2University of Nebraska at Kearney, Kearney, Nebraska

American football is a demanding sport characterized by high-intensity actions such as sprinting, multi-directional movement, tackling, and blocking. To add, there are several underlying characteristics that contribute to success which include optimal health status, body composition (BC), movement capacity (MC), muscular strength (MS) and power (MP), sprinting speed, and preparation for competition. Recently, the question “Where is the Sport Science in American Football?” has been asked by strength and conditioning research experts. PURPOSE: Therefore, the purpose of the present study was to develop and implement an organized and collaborative sport science approach to support the preparation, development, and performance of American football athletes. METHODS: This study used an observational design to examine BC, MC, MS, MP, sport performance (SP), and recovery-wellness (RW) characteristics. BC was assessed via bioimpedance analysis, while MC was assessed via markerless motion capture during a bilateral squat test. MS and MP were assessed via isometric mid-thigh pull, countermovement jump, and multi-rebound tests on a wireless uniaxial dual force plate system. SP was assessed via global positioning system technology and RW was assessed by subjective survey. Sixteen NCAA Division II American football athletes (age: 22.25±1.1 years; height: 183.75±7.8 cm; body mass: 97.22±20.39 kgs) participated in the present study. Kruskal-Wallis tests with Dunn test post-hoc adjustments were used to assess differences between position groups. RESULTS: Significant differences were observed between position groups for specific measures of BC (p=0.05), MS (p=0.03), MP (p=0.04), SP (p=0.01), and RW (p=0.02). However, no significant differences were observed for MC (p=0.09) within this cohort. CONCLUSION: The findings of this study highlight current collaborative sport science approaches within American football, as well as distinct position group characteristics.

Table 1.docx (13 kB)
Table 1

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