Journal article Open Access

Intensity of Children's Soccer Training and its Relationship with Daily Physical Activity Recommendations

Joana Lourenço; Catarina Rodrigues; Ana Oliveira; Denise Soares

The Covid-19 pandemic carried several consequences such as absence of regular physical activity, promoting an increase of weight in children (Pietrobelli et al., 2020). This study aims to compare the intensity of different types of soccer training and the intensity of two teams and finally determine whether football training can reach the RAF values for children. 21 athletes born in the 2010 year (10.4 ± 0.1 years) belonging to two different teams (main and secondary) wore the ActiGraph wGT3X+BT accelerometer during four training sessions (tactical (TT) and simulated game (SG)). The data were analyzed in epoch of 5s and the cut off values were applied according to Crouter (2015). Comparing the two teams, in TT there were differences for all intensities (p < 0.05), where the main team achieved higher intensities. In SG, the intensities were more similar. Between training types, the secondary team applied more intensity in SG, spending more time in vigorous intensity (p = 0.002). On average, the main team reached about 80% of the RAF, while the secondary team about 60%. Principal Component Analysis showed that the individual intensity applied in one type of training is consistent among trainings, and that children with higher IMC tend to spend more time in light intensity. Football stimulates mostly moderate intensities in the training context and allows athletes to reach about 70% of the RAF. These results show that soccer seems to be a good option as a promotion of physical activity and healthy lifestyles for children.

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