A Longitudinal Study of Physical Fitness in Elite Junior Tennis Players

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Abstract

Purpose: To analyze how physical fitness (PF) improves in elite junior tennis players related to age, maturity, and performance level. Methods: Elite junior tennis players (n = 113 boys, n = 83 girls) divided by performance level were monitored longitudinally from U14 to U16. Maturity, upper and lower-body power, speed, and agility were measured during subsequent competitive seasons. Improvement was analyzed per sex using multilevel analysis. Results: PF components for boys and girls improved over age (U14-U16) (ES.53-.97). In boys, the more mature boys outscored the less mature boys in upper and lower-body power from U14-U16. In girls, high-ranked girls outscored lower-ranked girls on lower-body power, speed, and agility (U14-U16) (p <.05). Conclusion: Boys and girls improved on all PF components during U14-U16. In boys, power was related to maturity. In girls, lower-body power, speed, and agility were related to tennis performance. This has important implications for talent development.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)553-564
Number of pages12
JournalPEDIATRIC EXERCISE SCIENCE
Volume28
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Nov-2016

Keywords

  • talent identification
  • adolescence
  • sport
  • youth
  • FIELD HOCKEY PLAYERS
  • PERFORMANCE
  • RELIABILITY
  • TESTS
  • POWER
  • DETERMINANTS
  • PHYSIOLOGY
  • MEDICINE
  • CHILDREN
  • VALIDITY

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