Repeated Sprint Capability in Soccer Players

by Gary S. Stebbing, CSCS
NSCA Coach November 2013
Vol 2, Issue 4


This article will examine the physical demands of soccer players and discuss why repeated sprint ability (RSA) is considered highly important in the performance of these athletes.

Paywall block issue

This article is not configured properly for members or paid content.
isMemberOnly: {{isMemberOnly}} | isPaidContent: {{isPaidContent}}
spc: One or more parts of the product SPC is missing.

Read the full article

View the video

Login to view more

{{discountDesc}} Valid thru {{discountEnds}}

This {{ogType == 'video.other' ? 'video':'article'}} is available with a NSCA membership

This {{ogType == 'video.other' ? 'video':'article'}} can be purchased for {{prices}}
Price includes membership pricing and promotions

Purchase this {{ogType == 'video.other' ? 'video':'article'}}. Price range: {{prices}}
Price range includes membership pricing and promotions

Become a Member Add to Cart Login

This article originally appeared in NSCA Coach, a quarterly publication for NSCA Members that provides valuable takeaways for every level of strength and conditioning coach. You can find scientifically based articles specific to a wide variety of your athletes’ needs with Nutrition, Programming, and Youth columns. Read more articles from NSCA Coach »



1. Bishop, D, and Giroud, O. Repeated sprint ability. In: Cardinale, M, Newton, R, and Nosaka, K (Eds). Strength and Conditioning – Biological Principles and Practical Applications. Chichester UK: Wiley-Blackwell; 223-241, 2011.
2. Bishop, D, Giraud, O, and Mendez-Villanueva, A. Repeated sprint ability – Part II: Recommendations for training. Sports Medicine 41(9): 741-756, 2011.
3. Buchheit, M, Bishop, D, Haydar, B, Nakamura, FY, and Ahmaidi, S. Physiological responses to shuttle repeated sprint running. International Journal of Sports Medicine 31(6): 402-409, 2010.
4. Buchheit, M, Mendez-Villaneuva, A, Delhommel, G, Brughelli, M, and Ahmaidi, S. Improving repeated sprint ability in young elite soccer players: Repeated shuttle sprints vs explosive training. The Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research 42(10): 2715-2722, 2010.
5. Chaouachi, A, Manzi, V, Wong, DP, Chaalali, A, Laurencelle, L, Chamari, K, and Castagna, C. Intermittent endurance and repeated sprint ability in soccer players. The Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research 24(10): 2663-2668, 2010.
6. Dellal, A, Chamari, K, Wong, DP, Ahmaidi, S, Keller, D, and Barros, RML. Comparison of physical and technical performance in European soccer match-play: FA Premier League and La Liga. European Journal of Sport Science 11(1): 51-59, 2011.
7. Gharbi, Z, Dardouri, W, Haj-Sassi, R, Chamari, K, and Souissi, N. Aerobic and Anaerobic determinants of repeated sprint ability in team sport athletes. Biology of Sport 32(3): 207-212, 2015.
8. Gregson, W, Drust, B, Atkinson, G, and Salvo, VD. Match to match variability of high speed activities in Premier League Soccer. International Journal of Sports Medicine 31(4): 237-242, 2010.
9. Haugen, T, Tonnessen, E, Leirstein, S, Hem, E, and Seiler, S. Not quite so fast: Effect of training at 90% sprint speed on maximal and repeated-sprint ability in soccer players. Journal of Sport Sciences 32(20): 1979-1986, 2014.
10. Haugen, TA, Tonnessen, E, and Seiler, S. Anaerobic performance testing of professional soccer players 1995-2010. International Journal of Sports Physiology and Performance 8(2):148-156, 2013.
11. Hoff, J. Training and testing physical capacities for elite soccer players. Journal of Sport Sciences 23(6): 573-582, 2005.
12. Hoff, J, and Helgerud, J. Endurance and strength training for soccer players – Physiological considerations. Sports Medicine 34(3): 165-180, 2004.
13. Johnston, RD, and Gabett, T. Repeated sprint and effort ability in rugby league players. The Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research 25(10): 2789-2795, 2011.
14. Le Rossignol, P, Gabbett, TJ, Comerford, D, and Stanton, WR. Repeated sprint ability and team selection in Australian Football League players. International Journal of Sports Physiology and Performance 9(1): 161-165, 2014.
15. López-Segovia, M, Dellal, A, Chamari, K, and González-Badillo, JJ. Importance of muscle power variables in repeated and single sprint performance in soccer. Journal of Human Kinetics 40, 201-211, 2014.
16. McGawley, K, and Anderson, PI. The order of concurrent training does not affect soccer related performance adaptations. International Journal of Sports Medicine 34(11): 983-990, 2013.
17. Mohr, M, and Marcello Iaia, F. Physiological basis of fatigue resistance training in competitive football. Gatorade Sports Science Exchange 27(126): 1-9, 2014.
18. Osgnach, C, Poser, S, Bernardini, R, and di Prampero. Energy cost and metabolic power in elite soccer: A new match analysis approach. Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise 42(1): 170-178, 2010.
19. Reilly, T. An ergonomics model of the soccer training process. Journal of Sport Sciences 23(6): 561-572, 2005.
20. Turner, AN, and Stewart, PF. Strength and conditioning for soccer players. Strength and Conditioning Journal 36(4): 1-13, 2014.

About the author

Gary S. Stebbing, CSCS,*D

Contact Gary Stebbing

Contact Gary Stebbing

Your first name is required.
Your last name is required.
Your email is required.
Your message is required.
Your reCaptcha is required.

Your email was successfully sent to Gary Stebbing

Gary Stebbing is based in the United Kingdom. His primary areas of interest are building excellence and human performance design. He studied Sport and ...

View full biography
#NSCAStrong #NSCAStrong

has been added to your shopping cart!

Continue Shopping Checkout Now