This study examined the effects of a progressive resistance training program in addition to soccer training on the physical capacities of male adolescents. Eighteen soccer players (age: 12-15 years) were separated in a soccer (SOC; n = 9) and a strength-soccer (STR; n = 9) training group and 8 subjects of similar age constituted a control group. All players followed a soccer training program 5 times a week for the development of technical and tactical skills. In addition, the STR group followed a strength training program twice a week for 16 weeks. The program included 10 exercises, and at each exercise, 2-3 sets of 8-15 repetitions with a load 55-80% of 1 repetition maximum (1RM). Maximum strength ([1RM] leg press, bench-press), jumping ability (squat jump [SJ], countermovement jump [CMJ], repeated jumps for 30 seconds) running speed (30 m, 10 x 5-m shuttle run), flexibility (seat and reach), and soccer technique were measured at the beginning, after 8 weeks, and at the end of the training period. After 16 weeks of training, 1RM leg press, 10 x 5-m shuttle run speed, and performance in soccer technique were higher (p < 0.05) for the STR and the SOC groups than for the control group. One repetition maximum bench press and leg press, SJ and CMJ height, and 30-m speed were higher (p < 0.05) for the STR group compared with SOC and control groups. The above data show that soccer training alone improves more than normal growth maximum strength of the lower limps and agility. The addition of resistance training, however, improves more maximal strength of the upper and the lower body, vertical jump height, and 30-m speed. Thus, the combination of soccer and resistance training could be used for an overall development of the physical capacities of young boys.
(C) 2006 National Strength and Conditioning Association