Athanasios Angelis | Monitoring
There are different opinions about the loads that the players receive during a football tennis or other called football volley game. There are many who consider that performing this type of games is ideal for sessions aimed at discharging players. There is, of course, the opposite view, from those who believe that it may seem 'innocent' because footballers have fun playing it, but the loads they receive may not be so small.
Trying to clarify this issue, we have collected data from a 3 Vs 3 football tennis game that took place on a 10m x 5m pitch (2 squares of 5m x 5m). When analyzing the data, we noticed that the player of each team standing backwards (the one who was mainly taking the first balls), received more loads than the other two. Specifically, it covered an average of 47.5m / min while the players who stood in front of the net covered 29.3m / min. In addition, they had 1.75 direction changes per minute versus 0.9 respectively. Regarding the number of medium and high intensity accelerations, the number was almost zero for the front players while the back made 0.9 per minute.
At the same time, we considered a parameter relatively unknown to most, which can only be recorded with high tech equipment. It is called IMA (Inertial Movement Analysis) and refers to a set of metrics that measures the movements of all three axes, which are performed in less than 0.3 tenths of a second. What we observed with respect to IMA medium and high intensity accelerations and decelerations was that the rear players performed 0.8 and 0.6 per minute respectively, while the front players performed 0.5 and 0.4.
Lastly, we monitored heart rate variability and observed that the players standing in front were constantly working below 75% of the HRmax, while those who chased the first balls regularly raised between 75-85% of the HRmax.
Before planning such games into training units aimed at unloading, we should know that the loads mentioned above will increase if the square meters corresponding to each player are increased. This can happen in two ways. Increasing the size of the pitch or reducing the number of players.
What we recommend is when organizing these games, we need to make sure that we have a balance in terms of the loads that our players receive, and to do that we have to change their positions frequently.