Effect of strength and power training on tackling ability in semiprofessional rugby league players

Speranza, Michael J A and Gabbett, Tim J. and Johnston, Rich D. and Sheppard, Jeremy M. (2016) Effect of strength and power training on tackling ability in semiprofessional rugby league players. Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, 30 (2). pp. 336-343. ISSN 1064-8011


This study examined the influence of a strength and power program on tackling ability in rugby league players. Twenty-four semiprofessional rugby league players (mean 6 SD age, 23.4 ± 3.1 years) underwent tests of upper-body strength (3 repetition maximum [RM] bench press), lower-body strength (3RM squat), upper-body power (plyometric push-up), and lower-body power (countermovement jump [CMJ]). Muscular strength relative to body mass was also calculated. Tackling ability of the players was assessed using video analysis of a standardized one-on-one tackling drill. The players then underwent 8 weeks of strength and power training as part of their preseason training before being retested. Training resulted in significant (p # 0.01) improvements in absolute and relative measures of squat, bench press, CMJ peak power, and plyometric push-up peak power. The strongest correlates of change in tackling ability were changes in 3RM squat (r = 0.60; p < 0.01) and squat relative to body mass (r = 0.54; p < 0.01). The players with the greatest improvements in 3RM squat and squat relative to body mass (i.e., responders) had significantly greater improvements in tackling ability than nonresponding players (p = 0.04; effect size [ES] ≥ 0.85). A small, nonsignificant difference (p = 0.20; ES = 0.56) in tackling ability was found between responders and nonresponders for lower-body power. The findings of this study demonstrate that the enhancement of lower-body muscular strength, and to a lesser extent muscular power, contribute to improvements in tackling ability in semiprofessional rugby league players.

Statistics for USQ ePrint 32267
Statistics for this ePrint Item
Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Files associated with this item cannot be displayed due to copyright restrictions.
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: No Faculty
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: No Faculty
Date Deposited: 21 Dec 2017 01:02
Last Modified: 23 Aug 2018 04:38
Uncontrolled Keywords: collision; contact; defense; tackle; wrestle; Athletic Performance; Football; Humans; Male; Muscle Strength; Resistance Training; Young Adult;
Fields of Research (2008): 11 Medical and Health Sciences > 1106 Human Movement and Sports Science > 110602 Exercise Physiology
11 Medical and Health Sciences > 1106 Human Movement and Sports Science > 110604 Sports Medicine
Fields of Research (2020): 42 HEALTH SCIENCES > 4207 Sports science and exercise > 420702 Exercise physiology
32 BIOMEDICAL AND CLINICAL SCIENCES > 3202 Clinical sciences > 320225 Sports medicine
Socio-Economic Objectives (2008): C Society > 92 Health > 9299 Other Health > 929999 Health not elsewhere classified
E Expanding Knowledge > 97 Expanding Knowledge > 970111 Expanding Knowledge in the Medical and Health Sciences
Identification Number or DOI: https://doi.org/10.1519/JSC.0000000000001058
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/32267

Actions (login required)

View Item Archive Repository Staff Only