G Jackson
C Reyes


G. Jackson, C. Reyes

Linfield University, McMinnville, OR

Neuromuscular fatigue should be monitored during a competitive season as indicators could provide physiological insight into training progress and possible movement compensations. A common method of monitoring neuromuscular fatigue is through consistent countermovement jump testing (CMJ) throughout a season. PURPOSE: The purpose of this study was to track changes to CMJ kinetic and kinematic variables throughout a collegiate competitive soccer season. METHODS: The first team (n = 15) of an NCAA Division III male collegiate soccer program were participants for this study. Each player performed CMJs every 3-days-before-gameday (GD+3) and 1-day-before-gameday (GD+1) during their competitive season (5.5 weeks long). All CMJ were completed at the beginning of each of their normal team in-season strength training sessions. All CMJ performances and metrics were recorded on a force plate. The specific CMJ metrics tracked regularly were peak power (PP) and jump height (JH). RESULTS: PP on GD+1 jumps produced a change in their jump versus their GD+3 jumps. GD+3 jumps had an average power of 1783.5 Newtons (N) and GD+1 jumps had an average power of 1818.3 N. On average game day +3 jumps increased 34.8 Newtons (2% increase). Jump height had a less consistent change throughout the season. There was a change of +/- .23 inches per jump. There was a performance change of +/- 1.8% per jump. CONCLUSION: CMJ can be an effective way of monitoring neuromuscular function during the competitive season of soccer players. Data showed PP to be significantly higher in GD+1 than GD+3, providing evidence that recovery takes several days post-gameday for the neuromuscular system to return to baseline. CMJ data like the ones presented in this study could help coaches and practitioners make informed decisions to adjust practice and training programs to ensure fitness outweighs fatigue for improved performance and decreased chance of injury.

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