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
©Journal of Sports Science and Medicine (2024) 23, 445 - 454   DOI:

Research article
Small-Sided Soccer Games Promote Greater Adaptations on Vertical Jump and Change-of-Direction Deficit and Similar Adaptations in Aerobic Capacity than High-Intensity Interval Training in Females
XiaoYuan Wen1, FaMing Song2, LiuXi Yang3, Qi Xu4, 
Author Information
1 ChengDu Sports Univ, Chengdu, Peoples R China
2 Civil Aviation Flight University of China, Deyang, Sichuan, China
3 School of Athletic Performance, Shanghai University of Sport, Shanghai, China
4 Gdansk University of Physical Education and Sport, Gdańsk, Poland

Qi Xu
✉ Gdansk University of Physical Education and Sport, 80-336 Gdańsk, Poland
Publish Date
Received: 01-04-2024
Accepted: 16-05-2024
Published (online): 01-06-2024

The objective of this study was to compare the effectiveness of both small-sided games (SSG) and short interval running-based high-intensity interval training (HIIT) programs over an 8-week period in fostering adaptations in aerobic capacity, change-of-direction abilities, and jumping performances of youth female soccer players. The study involved 48 female youth participants under the age of 19, competing at the regional level, who took part in a randomized controlled trial. Participants were assigned to either the SSG group, the HIIT group, or a control group, which involved regular in-field sessions. Assessments were conducted at baseline and after the 8-week training intervention, measuring aerobic capacity using the 30-15 intermittent fitness test (VIFT), change of direction (COD) using the 5-0-5 test, and jumping performance using the countermovement jump test (CMJ). Time 5 group analysis revealed significant interactions in CMJ (p = 0.005; ηp2= 0.213) and VIFT (p < 0.001; ηp2 = 0.433), although no significant interaction were found in COD deficit (p = 0.246; ηp2 = 0.060). Within-group analysis revealed that SSG significantly improved CMJ (p < 0.001), COD deficit (p < 0.001), and VIFT (p < 0.001). HIIT group also significantly improved CMJ (p = 0.029), COD deficit (p = 0.001), and VIFT (p < 0.001). As conclusion, the study revealed that SSG promoted significantly improvements in VIFT, CMJ and COD deficit, being significantly better than control group, while HIIT was only significantly better than control in VIFT. SSG revealed to be effective approach for favoring key physical attributes of female soccer players, being an interesting and recommended training approach to increase the ecology of the training practice, while favoring physical positive adaptations.

Key words: Football, high-intensity interval training, drill-based games, aerobic capacity, neuromuscular performance

           Key Points
  • SSGs lead to greater improvements in vertical jump and change-of-direction abilities compared to HIIT among female soccer players.
  • Both SSG and HIIT groups demonstrated significant improvements in aerobic capacity, suggesting comparable effectiveness in this aspect of fitness training.
  • SSGs offer superior benefits in addressing specific athletic demands like vertical jump and change-of-direction deficit, attributed to their dynamic and unpredictable nature, emphasizing the importance of integrating them into training programs for female soccer players.
Home Issues About Authors
Contact Current Editorial board Authors instructions
Email alerts In Press Mission For Reviewers
Archive Scope
Supplements Statistics
Most Read Articles
  Most Cited Articles
JSSM | Copyright 2001-2024 | All rights reserved. | LEGAL NOTICES | Publisher

It is forbidden the total or partial reproduction of this web site and the published materials, the treatment of its database, any kind of transition and for any means, either electronic, mechanic or other methods, without the previous written permission of the JSSM.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.