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Reliability of Change of Direction and Agility Assessments in Youth Soccer Players

Dugdale, James H.; Sanders, Dajo; Hunter, Angus M.


Dajo Sanders

Angus M. Hunter


Considering the vast physical and neural developments experienced throughout adolescence, the reliability of physical performance may vary in youth populations. This study aimed to examine the reliability of change of direction (COD) and agility tests in youth soccer players. Altogether, 86 youth soccer players, aged 13.6 ± 2.0 years, volunteered to participate. Data were collected from a modified 505 COD test (m505COD) and the Y-sprint drill in both pre-planned (Y-SprintPRE) and reactive (Y-SprintREACT) conditions during 2 sessions, 7 days apart. Anthropometric data including body mass, standing stature, and sitting height were also collected. COD and agility tests demonstrated good reliability (ICC = 0.81–0.91; CV = 1.2–2.0; d = 0.00–0.31; p < 0.01) for our entire sample. However, we observed a small negative relationship between age and intersession differences for the Y-SprintPRE (r = −0.28; p = 0.04), and moderate negative relationships between both age (r = −0.41; p < 0.01), and maturity offset (r = −0.39; p < 0.01) for the Y-SprintREACT. Although the COD and agility tests adopted within this study possess good intersession reliability, we observed greater intersession differences for younger and less mature individuals. We suggest that while COD and agility tests may provide meaningful objective data for monitoring the development of youth soccer players, these tests should be used with caution when evaluating younger, more immature athletes.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Apr 16, 2020
Online Publication Date Apr 18, 2020
Publication Date 2020
Deposit Date Feb 2, 2022
Publicly Available Date Feb 2, 2022
Journal Sports
Print ISSN 2075-4663
Publisher MDPI
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 8
Issue 4
Pages 51
Keywords performance; adolescent; fitness testing; physical; maturation
Public URL


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