Soccer specific testing of maximal oxygen uptake

J Sports Med Phys Fitness. 2003 Jun;43(2):139-44.


Aim: Endurance capacity in soccer players is important. A soccer specific test for direct measurement of maximal oxygen uptake does, however, not exist. The aim of this study was to evaluate maximal oxygen uptake in a soccer specific field test, compared to treadmill running.

Methods: Ten male soccer players (age 21.9+/-3.0 years, body mass 73.3+/-9.5 kg, height 179.9+/-4.7 cm) participated in the study, and 5 endurance trained men (age 24.9+/-1.8 years, body mass 81.5+/-3.7 kg, height 185.6+/-3.1 cm) took part in a comparison of the portable and the stationary metabolic test systems. The soccer players accomplished a treadmill test and a soccer specific field test containing dribbling, repetitive jumping, accelerations, decelerations, turning and backwards running.

Results: Maximal oxygen uptake was similar in field (5.0+/-0.5 L x min(-1)) and laboratory (5.1+/-0.7 L x min(-1)) tests, as were maximal heart rate, maximal breathing frequency, respiratory exchange ratio and oxygen pulse. Maximal ventilation was 5.4% higher at maximal oxygen uptake during treadmill running.

Conclusion: These findings show that testing of maximal oxygen uptake during soccer specific testing gives similar results as during treadmill running, and therefore serves as a valid test of maximal oxygen uptake in soccer players.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Exercise Test / methods*
  • Heart Rate / physiology
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Maximal Voluntary Ventilation / physiology
  • Oxygen Consumption / physiology*
  • Pulmonary Gas Exchange / physiology
  • Soccer*