Effect of plyometric training on sand versus grass on muscle soreness and selected sport-specific performance variables in hockey players
Purpose. The purpose of this study was to compare the effects of a 4-week plyometric training on two different surfaces, sand and grass on muscle soreness and selected sport-specific performance variables in national level hockey players. Methods. Subjects were randomly divided into two groups- grass training group (N=20) and sand training group (N=20). After the baseline measurements of strength, endurance, balance, and agility, plyometric training was given for 4-weeks,three sessions per week.Muscle soreness was assessed at the end of each training session on a 7-point likert scale.Post-readings of strength, endurance, balance and agility were taken after the 4-week training programme. Findings. Data when compared after plyometric training revealed no significant changes between two groups (p>0.05), however players in the sand group experienced less muscle soreness (p<0.05) than grass group. There was significant improvement (p<0.05) seen in the tested variables in both groups after the training but no significant interaction was found between the two surfaces after the training. Conclusion. These findings suggest that short-term plyometric training on sand/non-rigid surface induces similar improvements in strength, endurance, balance and agility as on firm surface but induces significantly less muscle soreness. Hence, plyometric training on sand is viable option for coaches to enhance performance in athletes,while reducing risk of muscle soreness and damage.
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