Title

The influence of professional status on maximal and rapid isometric torque characteristics in elite soccer referees

Document Type

Article

Journal/Book Title/Conference

Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research

Volume

28

Issue

5

Publisher

Lippincott, Williams & Wilkins

Publication Date

5-1-2014

First Page

1310

Last Page

1318

DOI

10.1519/JSC.0000000000000278

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to examine the effectiveness of maximal and rapid isometric torque characteristics of the posterior muscles of the hip and thigh and lower-body power to discriminate between professional status in full-time and part-time professional soccer referees. Seven full-time (mean ± SE: age = 36 ± 2 years; mass = 82 ± 4 kg; and height = 179 ± 3 cm) and 9 part-time (age = 34 ± 2 years; mass = 84 ± 2 kg; and height = 181 ± 2 cm) professional soccer referees performed 2 isometric maximal voluntary contractions (MVCs) of the posterior muscles of the hip and thigh. Peak torque (PT) and absolute and relative rate of torque development (RTD) were calculated from a torque-time curve that was recorded during each MVC. Lower-body power output was assessed through a vertical jump test. Results indicated that the rapid torque characteristics were greater in the full-time compared with the part-time referees for absolute RTD (p = 0.011) and relative RTD at 1/2 (p = 0.022) and 2/3 (p = 0.033) of the normalized torque-time curve. However, no differences were observed for PT (p = 0.660) or peak power (Pmax, p = 0.149) between groups. These findings suggest that rapid torque characteristics of the posterior muscles of the hip and thigh may be sensitive and effective measures for discriminating between full-time and part-time professional soccer referees. Strength and conditioning coaches may use these findings to help identify professional soccer referees with high explosive strength-related capacities and possibly overall refereeing ability.

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