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The use of GPS to analyse the worst-case scenario of movement demands using fixed epochs versus rolling averages and the impact of climate and travel on the male England Rugby Sevens team during the World Rugby Sevens Series / ELIZA ULLERSPERGER

Swansea University Author: ELIZA ULLERSPERGER

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Abstract

Introduction: Analysing and quantifying movement demands using global positioning systems (GPS) traditionally uses fixed-time epochs (FIXED). However, research has indicated FIXED underestimates movement demands versus rolling averages (ROLL). Rugby sevens athletes are also exposed to travel and cli...

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Published: Swansea 2022
Institution: Swansea University
Degree level: Master of Research
Degree name: MSc by Research
Supervisor: Kilduff, Liam ; Waldron, Mark
URI: https://cronfa.swan.ac.uk/Record/cronfa59924
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Abstract: Introduction: Analysing and quantifying movement demands using global positioning systems (GPS) traditionally uses fixed-time epochs (FIXED). However, research has indicated FIXED underestimates movement demands versus rolling averages (ROLL). Rugby sevens athletes are also exposed to travel and climatic demands during the World Rugby Sevens Series, which research has reported to affect performance. Methods:This study compared; FIXED vs. ROLL, to quantify worst-case scenarios and analysed travel and climatic impacts on movement demands. 18 male England Rugby Sevens players wore 10 Hz GPS units during 52 games, with peak values of relative total distance (RTD) and relative high-speed running (>5 m.s-1; RHSR) recorded over 60-420 s using FIXED and ROLL epochs. Travel (duration, direction, time zones crossed) and climatic data (temperature, relative humidity, humidex) were collected and analysed against whole game relative distance and peak 1, 3 and 5-minute RTD and RHSR. Results:For each epoch, there was a difference between methods (60-420 s) (p < 0.001), with RTD and RHSR values decreasing as epoch length increased. FIXED always underestimated ROLL at each epoch for RTD (10-12%) and RHSR (12-20%). Whole game relative distance increased for temperature, relative humidity, and travel direction West (p < 0.05), and decreased following travel direction East and humidex (p < 0.05). Peak 5-minute RTD increased following travel direction West and relative humidity (p < 0.05) and decreased following travel Eastward (p < 0.05). Travel and climate did not significantly affect peak 1 and 3-minute RTD and peak 1, 3 and 5-minute RHSR. Conclusion:This is the first study in rugby sevens reporting an underestimation of the worst-case scenario using FIXED vs ROLL epochs. Information on the worst-case scenario is an important component in formulating training prescription. Travel and climatic factors can also influence performance, which may be independent of the effects on the worst-case scenario.
Item Description: ORCiD identifier: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-0252-2828
Keywords: Global Positioning System, rugby sevens, rugby, worst-case scenario, climate, travel, GPS
College: College of Engineering