ISSN: 1899-1955
Human Movement
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4/2019
vol. 20
 
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abstract:

Footedness in fitness and technical skills in young soccer players

Krzysztof Lipecki

Human Movement 2019 vol. 20 (4), 52-58
Online publish date: 2019/07/11
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Purpose
The aim of the study was to identify differences in fitness abilities and technical skills between young right-footed and left-footed soccer players.

Methods
The measurements included data collected from 111 male footballers aged 12–17 years (divided into 3 age categories: U13, U15, U17). Fitness abilities (5-m, 10-m, 30-m sprint, envelope run, standing long jump) and technical skill (dribbling, juggling, short passes, long passes) were measured.

Results
The results failed to show significant differences (p > 0.05) in speed, agility, or explosive strength of lower limbs between right- and left-footed soccer players in the U13, U15, and U17 categories. No significant differences between soccer players (right-footed, left-footed) were found in the dominant leg performance (p > 0.005), whereas for the non-dominant leg, left-footed U15 players had higher performance in juggling (p < 0.05) and long passes (p < 0.01). Regardless of age category, left-footed players were characterized by a lower range of asymmetry in all technical skills. Significant differences were observed only for dribbling skills in U13 (p < 0.05).

Conclusions
The type of lateral dominance (right-footedness, left-footedness) does not differentiate between young soccer players in terms of fitness abilities. Left-footed footballers are more symmetrical in technical preparation compared with the right-footed ones. With age and experience in training, a reduction in functional asymmetry in technical skills is observed between lower limbs in both right- and left-footed soccer players. Regardless of the type of lateral dominance, young players have their reserves in terms of symmetrical technical preparation.

keywords:

laterality, left-footed, right-footed, non-dominant leg, functional asymmetry

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