Purpose: The purpose of this experiment was to assess performance during repeated sprints utilizing self-selected recovery intervals in youth football (soccer) players at different stages of maturation. Methods: Quota sampling method was used to recruit 14 prepeak height velocity (PHV) and 14 post-PHV participants for the study (N?=?28; age?=?13 [0.9] y, stature?=?162.5 [10.8] cm, mass?=?50.2 [12.7] kg). Players performed repeated sprints comprising 10???30 m efforts under 2 experimental conditions: using 30-second and self-selected recovery intervals. Magnitude of effects for within- and between-group differences were reported using effect size (ES) statistics?±?90% confidence intervals and percentage differences. Results: The decline in sprint performance was likely lower in the pre-PHV compared with the post-PHV group during the standardized recovery trial (between-group difference?=?37%; ES?=?0.41?±?0.51), and likely lower in the post-PHV group during the self-selected recovery trial (between-group difference?=?50%; ES?=?0.45?±?0.54). Mean recovery duration was likely shorter in the pre-PHV compared with the post-PHV group during the self-selected recovery trial (between-group difference?=?26.1%; ES?=?0.47?±?0.45). Conclusion: This is the first study to show that during repeated sprints with self-selected recovery, pre-PHV children have an impaired ability to accurately interpret physical capabilities in the context of the task compared with post-PHV adolescents.
- high-intensity running