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Year : 2015  |  Volume : 15  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 220-225

Reaction time as a predictor for change-of-direction speed in male soccer players

1 Community College and the Faculty of Sciences and Arts, Northen Border Universiy, Turaif Campus, Turaif, Saudi Arabia
2 Department of Physiology, Community College and the Faculty of Sciences and Arts, Northen Border Universiy, Turaif Campus, Turaif, Saudi Arabia; Research Unit, Sport Performance and Health, High Institute of Sport and Physical Education of Ksar Said, Tunisia

Correspondence Address:
Homoud Mohammed Nawi Alanazi
Northern Border University, College of Art and Science in Turaif, Turaif, Saudi Arabia

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DOI: 10.4103/1319-6308.164287

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Background and Objectives: Measures of reaction time performance (RTP) to visual stimuli have been used as indicators of the speed of processing and also used to discriminate individuals with brain damage from controls. However, little is known about the relationship between RTP and change-of-direction speed, which is an important quality to performance in multi-direction sports. The Illinois agility test (IAT) and the 20-meter swerve-sprint test (20 m-SST) were designed to assess field sport change-of-direction speed and include linear sprint. This study examined the association between these two tests and their reliability with the RTP in football players. Methods: A total of 20 male soccer players (age: 24.04 ± 1.45 years; height: 175.75 ± 4.95 cm; body mass: 70.91 ± 8.90 kg), completed three tests. The 20 m-SST and IAT were evaluated using photoelectric cells timing gates while the software "reaction" was used to measure RTP in response to a visual stimulus. Pearson's correlations (P ≤ 0.05) was used to assess whether there are relationships between these variables. Results: The 20 m-SST was significantly and positively correlated with IAT while RTP was significantly correlated to IAT and 20 m-SST (P < 0.05). Interpretation and Conclusions: The significant relationships observed between IAT and RTP provides evidence to support the view that RTP can detect moderate performance changes in change-of-direction speed in football players. The results of this study indicate that RTP could be used as a valid assessment of change-of-direction speed as 20 m-SST and IAT in field sport athletes and particularly in soccer.

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