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Technical-Tactical Analysis of Youth Olympic Taekwondo Combat

Tornello, Francesco1,2,3; Capranica, Laura1; Minganti, Carlo3; Chiodo, Salvatore2,3; Condello, Giancarlo1; Tessitore, Antonio1

Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research: April 2014 - Volume 28 - Issue 4 - p 1151–1157
doi: 10.1519/JSC.0000000000000255
Original Research

Abstract: Tornello, F, Capranica, L, Minganti, C, Chiodo, S, Condello, G, and Tessitore, A. Technical-tactical analysis of youth Olympic taekwondo combat. J Strength Cond Res 28(4): 1151–1157, 2014—The purpose of this study was to define the technical and tactical profiles of official youth taekwondo competitions played under the most recent rules of the International Taekwondo Federation. Tactical actions (i.e., attack, defense, and block), technical executions (from 1- to 4-point scores), kicking legs (i.e., front/rear and right/left), and overall technical effectiveness were investigated in relation to match outcome of semifinal and final competitions (n = 50) of youth (aged 13–14 years) black belt athletes during the Italian Taekwondo Cadet Championship. Differences (p < 0.001) were found among all action typologies (Attack: 50.9 ± 2.2%; Defense: 27.7 ± 1.5%; Block: 21.3 ± 1.6%), with winners showing fewer (p = 0.005) offensive actions and more (p = 0.001) defensive actions with respect to non-winners. Independently from match outcome, technical exchanges showed differences (p < 0.001) for technical executions. Winners resulted more efficient (p < 0.001) for both technical and tactical variables. In general, these findings showed that Cadets tend to adopt an offensive strategy. In considering that the adoption of the new electronic system requires athletes to execute correct technical actions to have a score assigned, coaches should emphasize the effectiveness of scoring techniques and help athletes to effectively improve their defense and counterattack capabilities.

1Department of Movement, Human and Health Sciences, University of Rome “Foro Italico”, Rome, Italy;

2Italian Taekwondo Federation, Rome, Italy; and

3Department of Medicine and Surgery, University of Magna Graecia, Catanzaro, Italy

Address correspondence to Dr. Antonio Tessitore,

Copyright © 2014 by the National Strength & Conditioning Association.