Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
ISSN: 1303 - 2968   
Ios-APP Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
Androit-APP Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
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©Journal of Sports Science and Medicine (2013) 12, 559 - 564

Research article
Monitoring External and Internal Loads of Brazilian Soccer Referees During Official Matches
Eduardo C. Costa1, , Caio M. A. Vieira1, Alexandre Moreira2, Carlos Ugrinowitsch2, Carlo Castagna3, Marcelo S. Aoki4
Author Information
1 Federal University of Rio Grande do Norte, Brazil
2 University of São Paulo, Brazil
3 Italian Football Federation (FIGC), Italy
4 University of São Paulo, Brazil

Eduardo C. Costa
✉ Department of Physical Education, Federal University of Rio Grande do Norte, Brazil
Email: ecc@ufrnet.br
Publish Date
Received: 20-03-2013
Accepted: 21-06-2013
Published (online): 01-09-2013
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ABSTRACT

This study aimed to assess the external and internal loads of Brazilian soccer referees during official matches. A total of 11 field referees (aged 36.2 ± 7.5 years) were monitored during 35 matches. The external (distance covered, mean and maximal speed) and internal load parameters (session ratings of perceived exertion [RPE] training load [TL], Edwards' TL, and time spent in different heart rate [HR] zones) were assessed in 3-4 matches per referee. External load parameters were measured using a wrist Global Positioning System (GPS) receiver. No differences in distance covered (5.219 ± 205 vs. 5.230 ± 237 m) and maximal speed (19.3 ± 1.0 vs. 19.4 ± 1.4 km·h-1) were observed between the halves of the matches (p > 0.05). However, the mean speed was higher in the first half of the matches (6.6 ± 0.4 vs. 6.4 ± 0.3 km·h-1) (p < 0.05) than in the second half. The mean HR during the matches was ~89% of HRmax. In ~95% of the matches, the referees demonstrated a HR ≥ 80% of HRmax. Nonetheless, the time spent at 90-100% of HRmax was higher in the first half (59.9 vs. 52.3%) (p < 0.05). Significant correlations between session RPE TL and distance covered at 90-100% of HRmax (r = 0.62) and session RPE TL and maximal speed (r = 0.54) (p < 0.05) were noted. Furthermore, there was a positive correlation between session RPE TL and Edwards' TL (r = 0.61) (p < 0.05). Brazilian soccer referees demonstrated high external and internal load demands during official matches. The portable GPS/HR monitors and session RPE method can provide relevant information regarding the magnitude of the physiological strain during official matches.

Key words: Match activity, heart rate, session ratings of perceived exertion, training load, GPS receiver


           Key Points
  • High external and internal loads were imposed on Brazilian soccer referees during official matches.
  • There was a high positive correlation between a subjective marker of internal load (session RPE) and parameters of external load (distance covered between 90-100% of HR and maximal speed).
  • There was a high positive correlation between session RPE method and Edwards' method.
  • Session RPE seems to be a reliable marker of internal load.
  • The portable GPS/HR monitors and the session RPE method can provide relevant information regarding the magnitude of external and internal loads of soccer referees during official matches.
 
 
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