Science and Soccer

By Thomas Reilly; A. Mark Williams | Go to book overview

7

Different populations

Thomas Reilly

Introduction

Soccer at the professional level of play is arguably the world's leading sport. The best players receive the adulation of fans and lucrative financial rewards from both employers and sponsors. Yet the popularity of soccer is reflected as equally in the number of active participants in the recreational game as in those who watch the elite play.

Participants in soccer include young boys and girls, those who play the game for purposes of 'keep fit' indoors or outdoors and a growing number of women and veteran recreational players. Indeed the game has been modified for play by visually handicapped people with appropriate audio stimuli for locating the movement of the ball. The officials who regulate the game and control the players are usually neglected when aspects of play are considered.

This chapter is devoted to different populations within soccer. Attention is directed to specific groups including young and veteran players, disabled players and participants in modified forms of the game. Finally, consideration is given to soccer referees, their roles and fitness requirements.


7.1Women's soccer

Information about women's soccer is integrated within the content of the other chapters as far as possible. Issues not addressed already are considered here, since research into women's soccer has lagged considerably behind the men's game. This is because participation by women in the game has only recently been actively promoted. There was a step-wise increase in women's soccer clubs in the majority of European countries throughout the 1980s; for example, the number of women's clubs registered with the FA increased from 188 to 321 between 1980 and 1991. The women's game gained international credibility in 1991 when the First World Cup for women's teams took place in China. In the winning nation, the USA, the game is now widely played, as it is in Sweden, the host of the Second World Cup Finals in 1995. The USA, host to the 1999 World Cup Finals, now has an estimated 19 million females participating in soccer. Nevertheless, the game still has to be developed in a number of countries world-wide where women's participation in sport is restricted by cultural, domestic and economic circumstances.

It is probably only at the elite or professional level of play that female soccer players engage in strenuous sport-specific training programmes. In Danish soccer clubs, the training of women during the season consists of two to three sessions of 90 min each week. The national team players undergo additional training which consists of running (two to four sessions of 20-30 min per week) and general strength training (30 min once or twice a week). The training frequency is modified to suit individuals according to their domestic or

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Science and Soccer
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • 1 - Introduction to Science and Soccer 1
  • Part 1 - Biology and Soccer 7
  • 2 - Functional Anatomy 9
  • 3 - Fitness Assessment 21
  • 4 - Physiology of Training 47
  • 5 - Motion Analysis and Physiological Demands 59
  • 6 - Nutrition 73
  • 7 - Different Populations 96
  • Part 2 - Biomechanics and Soccer Medicine 107
  • 8 - Biomechanics Applied to Soccer Skills 109
  • References 118
  • 9 - The Biomechanics of Soccer Surfaces and Equipment 120
  • 10 - Injury Prevention and Rehabilitation 136
  • 11 - Psychology and Injury in Soccer 148
  • 12 - Environmental Stress 165
  • Part 3 - Behavioural Science and Soccer 185
  • 13 - Coaching Science and Soccer 187
  • 14 - Skill Acquisition 198
  • 15 - Stress, Performance and Motivation Theory 214
  • References 227
  • 16 - Soccer Violence 230
  • Part 4 - Match Analysis 243
  • 17 - Notational Analysis 245
  • 18 - The Science of Match Analysis 265
  • 19 - Information Technology 276
  • References 283
  • Part 5 - Growth and Adolescence 285
  • 20 - Growth and Maturity Status of Young Soccer Players 287
  • 21 - Identifying Talented Players 307
  • Index 327
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