Sprinting patterns of national rugby league competition

Gabbett, Tim J. (2012) Sprinting patterns of national rugby league competition. Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, 26 (1). pp. 121-130. ISSN 1064-8011


The purpose of this study was to investigate the sprinting demands of National Rugby League (NRL) competition and characterize the sprinting patterns of different rugby league playing positions. Thirty-seven elite rugby league players (mean 6 SE age: 23.6 ± 0.5 years) underwent global positioning satellite analysis during 104 NRL appearances. The majority (67.5%) of sprint efforts were across distances of <20 m. The most common sprint distance for hit-up forwards was 6-10 m (46.3%). Outside backs had a greater proportion (33.7%) of sprint efforts over distances of ≥21 m. The proportion of sprint efforts over 40 m or greater for hit-up forwards, wide running forwards, adjustables, and outside backs was 5.0, 7.4, 5.0, and 9.7%, respectively. Of the sprints performed, approximately 48.0% involved contact, approximately 58.0% were preceded by forward locomotion (forward walking, jogging, or striding), whereas over 24.0% occurred from a standing start. Hit-up forwards more commonly sprinted from a standing start, or after lateral movement, whereas forward striding activities more commonly preceded sprint efforts for the adjustables and outside backs. The majority of sprint efforts were performed without the ball (78.7 vs. 21.3%). Most sprint efforts (67.5%) were followed by a long recovery (i.e., ≥5 minutes). Outside backs had the greatest proportion (76.1%) of long duration recovery periods and the smallest proportion (1.8%) of short duration recovery periods (i.e.<60 seconds) between sprints. The results of this study demonstrate differences among rugby league playing positions for the nature of sprint efforts and the typical distances covered during these efforts. Furthermore, the activities preceding and the recovery periods after sprint efforts were different among playing positions. These findings suggest that rugby league sprint training should be tailored to meet the individual demands of specific playing positions.

Statistics for USQ ePrint 32350
Statistics for this ePrint Item
Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Published version cannot be displayed due to copyright restrictions.
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: No Faculty
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: No Faculty
Date Deposited: 23 May 2017 01:17
Last Modified: 20 Jul 2017 02:41
Uncontrolled Keywords: acceleration; effort; sprint training; sprinting demands; velocity
Fields of Research (2008): 11 Medical and Health Sciences > 1106 Human Movement and Sports Science > 110699 Human Movement and Sports Science not elsewhere classified
Fields of Research (2020): 42 HEALTH SCIENCES > 4207 Sports science and exercise > 420799 Sports science and exercise not elsewhere classified
Socio-Economic Objectives (2008): C Society > 92 Health > 9299 Other Health > 929999 Health not elsewhere classified
Identification Number or DOI: https://doi.org/10.1519/JSC.0b013e31821e4c60
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/32350

Actions (login required)

View Item Archive Repository Staff Only