Biology of Sport
eISSN: 2083-1862
ISSN: 0860-021X
Biology of Sport
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4/2021
vol. 38
 
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abstract:
Original paper

Impact of COVID-19 lockdown on match-activity and physical performance in professional football referees

Victor Moreno-Perez
1, 2
,
María Luisa Martín-Sánchez
3
,
Juan Del Coso
4
,
Jose Luis Felipe
5
,
Javier Courel-Ibañez
6
,
Javier Sánchez-Sánchez
5, 7

1.
Sports Research Center, Miguel Hernandez University of Elche, Alicante, Spain
2.
Center for Translational Research in Physiotherapy. Department of Pathology and Surgery. Miguel Hernandez University of Elche, San Joan, Spain
3.
Grupo IGOID, University of Castilla La Mancha, Toledo, Spain
4.
Centre for Sport Studies, Rey Juan Carlos University, Fuenlabrada, Spain
5.
Faculty of Sport Sciences, Universidad Europea de Madrid, Madrid, Spain
6.
Faculty of Sport Sciences, University of Murcia, Murcia, Spain
7.
Comité Técnico de Árbitros (CTA) de la Real Federación Española de Fútbol (RFEF), Spain
Biol Sport. 2021;38(4):761–765
Online publish date: 2021/11/05
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To investigate the effect of COVID-19 lockdown on match-play metrics in professional football referees during official matches of the Spanish professional leagues. Forty-two professional football referees from the First (n = 20) and Second Division (n = 22) were monitored during 564 official games using Global Positioning System (GPS) technology. Data of matches before lockdown were compared to matches after resumption of the competition. Compared to pre-lockdown, in the referees of the First Division there was a decrease in the total running distance and the distance covered at all speed thresholds > 6 km ·h-1 after lockdown (P < .05). In the Second Division referees, the post-lockdown measurement only showed a decrease in the running distance at 21–24 km·h-1 (P < .05), with no changes in the other speed thresholds. The postlockdown measurement showed an increased distance covered at < 6 km·h-1 and the number of accelerations for both First and Second Division referees (P < .05). Referees’ match activity was reduced due to the COVID-19 lockdown, while the effect on running parameters was more pronounced in First Division referees.
keywords:

Detraining, Deconditioning, Soccer, Team sports, Performance

 
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