Physical fitness attributes of team-handball players are related to Playing Position and Performance Level

Background: Investigations have reported differences amongst player position groups in elite team-Handball (HB) players. Nevertheless, studies with normative physical fitness data of the HB playing positions at more than two different levels of male HB players have not been reported yet. Objectives: This study aimed: 1) to describe and compare the physical fitness (PF) attributes of male HB players in different playing positions, and 2) to determine which combination of PF measures best discriminate the performance level groups in each one of the individual HB playing position groups. Materials and Methods: One hundred and sixty-one male HB players participated in this study. The participants were divided into five playing position groups: 1) Goalkeeper (GK, n = 24), 2) Wing (W, n = 48), 3) Back left/right (BLR, n = 38), 4) Back center (BC, n = 29), 5) Pivot (Pi, n = 22), complementarily, performance level was recorded for each participant according to the national HB association, i.e. 1) Top Elite, 2) Moderate Elite, 3) Sub-Elite or, 4) Moderately Trained. Stature and body mass measures were taken from each HB player, and six fitness tests were performed (30 -m sprint, handgrip, vertical jumps-SJ and CMJ, sit-ups, and Yo-Yo IE2). Results: Significant differences were observed between HB playing position groups in body size, speed, and lower limb power and handgrip strength. Nevertheless, 1) the performance in Yo-Yo IE2 was the best measure to discriminate the performance level groups when considering the HB goalkeeper group, HB center back group, and HB pivot group; 2) the average leg power (in squat jump) and the number of executions in sit up test successfully discriminated HB wing performance level groups; and, 3) Stature, countermovement jump height and the position in the Yo-Yo IE2, successfully discriminated HB left/right back performance level groups. Conclusions: It can be concluded that HB players profile, 1) differs according to HB playing position group, and, 2) for the same playing position group, it differs according to HB performance level. This study also demonstrated the influence of aerobic capacity for HB excellence, and according to playing positions.
© Copyright 2014 Asian Journal of Sports Medicine. Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Sports Medicine Research Center. All rights reserved.

Subjects: performance playing position (sport games) relation performance capacity handball
Notations: sport games
DOI: 10.5812/asjsm.24712
Published in: Asian Journal of Sports Medicine
Published: 2014
Volume: 6
Issue: 1
Document types: article
Language: English
Level: advanced