Effects of short-term resistance training and tapering on maximal strength, peak power, throwing ball velocity, and sprint performance in handball players

The purpose of this study was to assess the effect of short-term resistance training and two weeks of tapering on physical performances in handball players. Following a ten-week progressive resistance training program, subjects were divided between an experimental (n = 10) and a control group (n = 10). The experimental group completed a resistance training program, followed by a two-week period when the training intensity was tapered by 60%, while the control group maintained their typical pattern of training. Muscle power (force–velocity test and squat and counter-movement jump tests), sprinting ability (10m and 30m), ability to change direction (T-half test) and throwing velocity (a 3-step throw with a run, and a jump throw) were evaluated before training, at the end of training and after tapering. The experimental group showed significantly larger interaction effects for the 10-week training period (12/15, 80%), than for the following 2 weeks of tapering (10/15, 67%), with the largest gains being in 15 m sprint times (d = 3.78) and maximal muscular strength in the snatch (d = 3.48). Although the performance of the experimental group generally continued to increase over tapering, the mean effect size for the training period was markedly higher (d = 1.92, range: 0.95–3.78) than that seen during tapering (d = 1.02, range: -0.17–2.09). Nevertheless the ten weeks of progressive resistance training followed by two weeks of tapering was an effective overall tactic to increase muscle power, sprint performance and ball throwing velocity in handball players.
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Subjects: handball training strength tapering throws velocity performance sprint short-distance running load organization
Notations: sport games
DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0214827
Published in: PLOSOne
Published: 2019
Volume: 14
Issue: 7
Pages: e0214827
Document types: article
Language: English
Level: advanced