Background: Female soccer practice has increased markedly in recent years. Soccer is a team sport and an intermittent exercise that requires repeatedly maximal or near-maximal
efforts, interspersed with brief recovery intervals, over an extended period of time, i.e., “repeated-sprint ability” (RSA). During a game, elite-players run around 10 km at an average intensity close
to the anaerobic threshold. Thus, the aim of our study was to evaluate, RSA and performance, and physiological variables of soccer players divided, according to the median separation technique
(Chaouachi et al, 2010), in groups with high and low VO2max.
Methods: We evaluated 20 female soccer players’ (different field positions) of a national competitive team. The evaluations were: DEXA: body composition to determinate body fat (%);
Maximal graded exercise test: physiological responses to exercise and aerobic power (VO2max) to compose the study groups; RSA: 10 sprints (20m) interspersed of active recovery (20s). RSA variables was
monitoring by photocells and consisted: lower sprint time, total time (tt, seconds) and % of decay (dec%). Immediately after test the subjective perceived exertion (SPE) was determinate (Borg 15 point
scale) and after 3 minutes blood was collected for determination of lactate concentration; Vertical jump, consisted of jumping assessment (Squat jump: SJ and Counter Movement Jump: CMJ) on a force
plate. The parameter evaluated was the greatest height (cm) reached (after several single jumps with 15 seconds intervals) for each jump type; Statistical analysis: data were presented as
mean±standard deviation (SD). The comparison between groups (higher and lower VO2max - median value = 52.01 mL/kg/min) was performed using the t Student test for independent samples. Statistical
significance was set at p <0.05.
Results: Comparing the groups with higher (54.6±2.4 mL/kg/min, n=10) and lower (48.5±2.9 mL/kg/min, n=10) VO2max (p<0.05), we needed highlight: RSA- tt (sec), 34.02±1.48 and
35.06±0.76 (p=0.063); %dec, 3.4±1.3 and 4.6±1.4 (p=0.072); SPE 12.7±3.0 and 14.4±2.5 (p=0.184); Aerobic performance- vVO2max (km/h), 15.8±1.1 and 14.9±1.0 (p=0.076); Vertical jump height (cm)- SJ,
37.1±4.3 and 33.1±3.3 (p<0.05); CMJ, 39.5±5.1 and 35.1±3.1 (p<0.05); and Body composition- body fat (%), 21.6±5.6 and 25.2±4.6 (p=0.152).
Conclusions: Soccer performance is a construct based on multi-factorial performance components (technical, tactical, and physiological) and their interaction at the individual and
team levels. Despite having been a strong tendency for statistical differences between groups this does not occurred probably by a small sample size and that we have analyzed players of different
positions together. Our main conclusion was that low aerobic power can impact negatively vertical jump performance. Considering that the individual performance can influence the team performance,
improved cardiorespiratory fitness could improve this scenario.