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Twelve-Month Training-Induced Changes in Elite International Volleyball Players

Sheppard, Jeremy M1,2; Chapman, Dale W1,2; Gough, Clare1; McGuigan, Michael R2; Newton, Robert U2

Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research: October 2009 - Volume 23 - Issue 7 - pp 2096-2101
doi: 10.1519/JSC.0b013e3181b86d98
Original Research

Sheppard, JM, Chapman, DW, Gough, C, McGuigan MR, and Newton, RU. Twelve-month training-induced changes in elite international volleyball players. J Strength Cond Res 23(7): 2096-2101, 2009-The purpose of this investigation was to examine the strength, power, and anthropometric contributors to vertical jump performances that are considered specific to volleyball success, including countermovement vertical jump (CMVJ) and spike jump (SPJ), by examining changes across 12 months in elite volleyball players. Anthropometry (height, mass, ∑7 skinfolds), vertical jump ability (CMVJ, SPJ, and depth jumps from 35 cm), kinetic and kinematic data from an unloaded and loaded (body mass + 50%) jump squat were assessed before and after 12 months of training in 20 elite male volleyball players. To examine the association between the change in each of the strength, power, and anthropometric variables with the changes in CMVJ and SPJ, a correlation analysis of the percent change of each variable with the percent change in CMVJ and SPJ was performed. A significant correlation (r = 0.47; p = 0.04) was observed between changes in CMVJ and SPJ. Significant (p = 0.006-0.02) improvements in CMVJ were associated with increased peak force in the unloaded (r = 0.61) and loaded jump squat (r = 0.59) and greater relative power and peak velocity in the loaded jump squat (r = 0.49 and 0.51, respectively). The significant increase in CMVJ was strongly associated (r = 0.865; p < 0.001) with an improved depth-jump ability. Significant (p = 0.003-0.03) increases in SPJ were related to increases in relative power (r = 0.64), peak force (r = 0.46), and peak velocity (r = 0.49) in the loaded jump and improved depth-jumping ability (r = 0.591). This study demonstrates that, in an elite population of volleyball players, stretch-shortening cycle performance and the ability to tolerate high stretch loads, as in the depth jump, are critical to improving jumping performance.

1Physiology Department, Australian Institute of Sport, Canberra, Australia; and 2NZ Academy of Sport North Island, Millennium Institute of Sport & Health, Antares Place, Mairangi Bay 0632 Glen Innes, Auckland 1743, New Zealand

Address correspondence to Jeremy Sheppard, jeremy.sheppard@dlgsr.qld.gov.au.

© 2009 National Strength and Conditioning Association