• Postactivation potentiation and change of direction speed in elite academy rugby players

      Marshall, James; Turner, Anthony; Jarvis, Paul; Maloney, Sean J.; Cree, Jon; Bishop, Chris; Middlesex University; University of Bedfordshire (NSCA National Strength and Conditioning Association, 2019-06-01)
      This study investigated the effect of preceding proagility sprints with maximal isometric squats to determine if postactivation potentiation (PAP) could be harnessed in change of direction speed. Sixteen elite under-17 rugby union players (age: 16 6 0.41 years; body mass: 88.7 6 12.1 kg; height: 1.83 6 0.07 m) from an Aviva Premiership rugby club were tested. Subjects performed a change of direction specific warm-up, followed by 2 baseline proagility tests. After 10-minute recovery, 3 3 3-second maximal isometric squats with a 2-minute recovery between sets were completed as a conditioning activity (CA) on a force plate where peak force and mean rate of force development over 300 milliseconds were measured. The proagility test was repeated at set time intervals of 1, 3, 5, and 7 minutes after the CA. Overall proagility times were significantly slower (p, 0.05) at 1 minute post-CA compared with the baseline (3.3%), with no significant differences occurring at 3, 5, or 7 minutes post-CA. Therefore, it appears that performing multiple sets of maximal isometric squats do not enhance proagility performance.