Reliability of the one-repetition-maximum power clean test in adolescent athletes

J Strength Cond Res. 2012 Feb;26(2):432-7. doi: 10.1519/JSC.0b013e318220db2c.


Although the power clean test is routinely used to assess strength and power performance in adult athletes, the reliability of this measure in younger populations has not been examined. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to determine the reliability of the 1-repetition maximum (1RM) power clean in adolescent athletes. Thirty-six male athletes (age 15.9 ± 1.1 years, body mass 79.1 ± 20.3 kg, height 175.1 ±7.4 cm) who had >1 year of training experience in weightlifting exercises performed a 1RM power clean on 2 nonconsecutive days in the afternoon following standardized procedures. All test procedures were supervised by a senior level weightlifting coach and consisted of a systematic progression in test load until the maximum resistance that could be lifted for 1 repetition using proper exercise technique was determined. Data were analyzed using an intraclass correlation coefficient (ICC[2,k]), Pearson correlation coefficient (r), repeated measures analysis of variance, Bland-Altman plot, and typical error analyses. Analysis of the data revealed that the test measures were highly reliable demonstrating a test-retest ICC of 0.98 (95% confidence interval = 0.96-0.99). Testing also demonstrated a strong relationship between 1RM measures in trials 1 and 2 (r = 0.98, p < 0.0001) with no significant difference in power clean performance between trials (70.6 ± 19.8 vs. 69.8 ± 19.8 kg). Bland-Altman plots confirmed no systematic shift in 1RM between trials 1 and 2. The typical error to be expected between 1RM power clean trials is 2.9 kg, and a change of at least 8.0 kg is indicated to determine a real change in lifting performance between tests in young lifters. No injuries occurred during the study period, and the testing protocol was well tolerated by all the subjects. These findings indicate that 1RM power clean testing has a high degree of reproducibility in trained male adolescent athletes when standardized testing procedures are followed and qualified instruction is present.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Analysis of Variance
  • Confidence Intervals
  • Exercise Test*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Muscle Strength*
  • Muscle, Skeletal / physiology
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Resistance Training
  • Weight Lifting / physiology*