Profiling the kicking and handballing accuracy of female Australian football players across five competition levels

Jessica B. Farley*, Carl T. Woods, Justin W.L. Keogh, Nikki Milne

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

Abstract

Objectives: To profile the kicking and handballing accuracy of female Australian football (AF) players and investigate potential differences across five competition levels. 

Methods: Female AF players were classified into five competition levels: elite senior (≥18 years) (n=35), non-elite senior (≥18 years) (n=58), high-level junior (<18 years) (n=32), non-elite junior (14–17 years) (n=38), and non-elite junior (10–13 years) (n=42). Modified AF kicking and handballing tests examined accuracy outcomes. Competition level differences in accuracy were modelled using multivariate analysis of variance. 

Results: A large, significant difference between the competition levels was noted (F=11.508, p<0.001, Wilk’s Λ=0.462, η2p=0.227), with significant differences (p<0.001) observed in the modified AF kicking (ω2=0.514) and handballing (η2p=0.150-0.250) tests. Elite seniors and high-level juniors performed the modified AF kicking test more accurately than all non-elite competition levels (p≤0.001). Elite seniors were also more accurate in the modified AF handballing test (dominant hand) compared to all non-elite competition levels (p≤0.001). 

Conclusions: This study is the first to report technical skill characteristics in female AF across a broader participation pathway. These exploratory findings could be used as reference data for player development and inform training designs, namely by incorporating non-dominant handballing competitive play situations to develop this skill in female AF players.

Original languageEnglish
JournalScience and Medicine in Football
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 26 Feb 2021

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