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SHORT-TERM PLYOMETRIC TRAINING IMPROVES RUNNING ECONOMY IN HIGHLY TRAINED MIDDLE AND LONG DISTANCE RUNNERS

SAUNDERS PHILO U.; TELFORD, RICHARD D.; PYNE, DAVID B.; PELTOLA, ESA M.; CUNNINGHAM, ROSS B.; GORE, CHRIS J.; HAWLEY, JOHN A.
Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research: November 2006
ORIGINAL RESEARCH: PDF Only

ABSTRACTFifteen highly trained distance runners (JOURNAL/jscr/04.02/00124278-200611000-00036/ENTITY_OV0312/v/2017-07-20T235327Z/r/image-pngO2max 71.1 ± 6.0 ml·min−1·kg−1, mean ± SD) were randomly assigned to a plyometric training (PLY; n = 7) or control (CON; n = 8) group. In addition to their normal training, the PLY group undertook 3 × 30 minutes PLY sessions per week for 9 weeks. Running economy (RE) was assessed during 3 × 4 minute treadmill runs (14, 16, and 18 km·h−1), followed by an incremental test to measure JOURNAL/jscr/04.02/00124278-200611000-00036/ENTITY_OV0312/v/2017-07-20T235327Z/r/image-pngO2max. Muscle power characteristics were assessed on a portable, unidirectional ground reaction force plate. Compared with CON, PLY improved RE at 18 km·h−1 (4.1%, p = 0.02), but not at 14 or 16 km·h−1. This was accompanied by trends for increased average power during a 5-jump plyometric test (15%, p = 0.11), a shorter time to reach maximal dynamic strength during a strength quality assessment test (14%, p = 0.09), and a lower JOURNAL/jscr/04.02/00124278-200611000-00036/ENTITY_OV0312/v/2017-07-20T235327Z/r/image-pngO2-speed slope (14%, p = 0.12) after 9 weeks of PLY. There were no significant differences in cardiorespiratory measures or JOURNAL/jscr/04.02/00124278-200611000-00036/ENTITY_OV0312/v/2017-07-20T235327Z/r/image-pngO2max as a result of PLY. In a group of highly-trained distance runners, 9 weeks of PLY improved RE, with likely mechanisms residing in the muscle, or alternatively by improving running mechanics.

Fifteen highly trained distance runners (JOURNAL/jscr/04.02/00124278-200611000-00036/ENTITY_OV0312/v/2017-07-20T235327Z/r/image-pngO2max 71.1 ± 6.0 ml·min−1·kg−1, mean ± SD) were randomly assigned to a plyometric training (PLY; n = 7) or control (CON; n = 8) group. In addition to their normal training, the PLY group undertook 3 × 30 minutes PLY sessions per week for 9 weeks. Running economy (RE) was assessed during 3 × 4 minute treadmill runs (14, 16, and 18 km·h−1), followed by an incremental test to measure JOURNAL/jscr/04.02/00124278-200611000-00036/ENTITY_OV0312/v/2017-07-20T235327Z/r/image-pngO2max. Muscle power characteristics were assessed on a portable, unidirectional ground reaction force plate. Compared with CON, PLY improved RE at 18 km·h−1 (4.1%, p = 0.02), but not at 14 or 16 km·h−1. This was accompanied by trends for increased average power during a 5-jump plyometric test (15%, p = 0.11), a shorter time to reach maximal dynamic strength during a strength quality assessment test (14%, p = 0.09), and a lower JOURNAL/jscr/04.02/00124278-200611000-00036/ENTITY_OV0312/v/2017-07-20T235327Z/r/image-pngO2-speed slope (14%, p = 0.12) after 9 weeks of PLY. There were no significant differences in cardiorespiratory measures or JOURNAL/jscr/04.02/00124278-200611000-00036/ENTITY_OV0312/v/2017-07-20T235327Z/r/image-pngO2max as a result of PLY. In a group of highly-trained distance runners, 9 weeks of PLY improved RE, with likely mechanisms residing in the muscle, or alternatively by improving running mechanics.

Address correspondence to Philo Saunders, PhD, philo. saunders@ausport.gov.au.

© 2006 National Strength and Conditioning Association