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 (2023) 22, 273 - 280   DOI: https://doi.org/10.52082/jssm.2023.273

Research article
The Physical and Physiological Match-Play Locomotor Activity Profiles of Elite Domestic Male Field Hockey
Hayley Noblett , Sean Hudson, Jenny Killey, Michael Fish
Author Information
School of Human and Health Sciences, University of Huddersfield, Huddersfield, United Kingdom

Hayley Noblett
✉ School of Human and Health Sciences, University of Huddersfield, Huddersfield, United Kingdom
Email: h.noblett@hud.ac.uk
Publish Date
Received: 15-02-2023
Accepted: 28-04-2023
Published (online): 01-06-2023
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ABSTRACT

A new four-quarter match format in field hockey has meant that the locomotor activity profiles of the sport are inconsistent with the literature. The aim of this investigation was to identify the physical and physiological demands of national-level male hockey players. Thirty-two male players participated in the study. Participants were monitored with GPS and heart rate monitors. Variables analysed were total time, total distance (m), relative total distance (m.min-1), total distance in velocity bands (m), and activity intensity (m.min-1). Mean and maximum heart rate were calculated as well as total time and percentage time spent in heart rate zones relative to HRmax. Players spent 52 ± 11 min in play. The total distance covered was 5986 ± 1105 m (116 ± 12 m.min-1) with 21.4 ± 6.8 m.min-1 of high intensity activity. Defenders covered the lowest relative total distance (p < 0.001) and attackers the highest (p < 0.001). Relative total distance in Q4 was 5% lower than in Q1and Q2 (p < 0.05) with moderate intensity exercise (8.1-15.5 km.h-1) being 11% lower in Q4 compared to Q1 and Q2. The mean HR and HRmax of players were 167 ± 10 and 194 ± 11 bpm respectively. Players had a lower mean HR in Q3 (164bpm) and Q4 (164bpm) compared to Q1 (169bpm) and Q2 (168bpm; p < 0.001). The current study provides novel data outlining the physical and physiological activity profiles of national-level male field hockey players across playing positions as well as quarters of play. The results highlight a need to consider positional differences when implementing a training programme for players at national level.

Key words: GPS, Field Hockey, Team Sports, Heart Rate


           Key Points
  • This study provides novel normative data on the physical and physiological demands of elite domestic male field hockey players across playing positions as well as quarters of play.
  • The data in this paper could be beneficial to practitioners and coaches working in elite domestic field Hockey, as this can be used to inform training programmes, nutritional requirements, and match tactics (i.e., substitutions).
  • Our findings suggest that position specific training programmes would best replicate the demands of each position. The data could also help coaches to develop tactical substitution protocols during matches.
  • This is the first study to report the heart rate of male hockey players since the introduction of the four-quarter match format in the English National Hockey League. Understanding an athlete’s physiological response to an exercise stimulus can help aid the training of the cardiovascular system with particular focus on heart rate training loads within the sport.
 
 
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