Acute effects of sled towing on sprint time in male youth of different maturity status

Pediatr Exerc Sci. 2014 Feb;26(1):71-5. doi: 10.1123/pes.2012-0185. Epub 2013 Aug 29.


The purpose of this study was to investigate the effect of 2.5, 5, 7.5, and 10% body mass load on resisted sled towing 30 meter sprint times in male youth athletes of different maturity status. A total of 35 athletes (19 prepeak-height-velocity (PHV) and 16 mid/post-PHV) sprinted three times in an unloaded and each of the loaded conditions. The pre-PHV athletes were significantly slower (~33%; p < .05) than the more mature athletes across all loads (unloaded, 2.5, 5, 7.5, 10% body mass). Each incremental load (i.e., 2.5% body mass) was found to reduce 30 m sprint times by 3.70% (± 2.59) and 2.45% (± 1.48) for the pre- and mid/post-PHV respectively. The slopes of the pre- (y = 0.09 x + 5.71) and mid/post (y = 0.04 x + 4.38) regression equations were compared and found to be statistically different (p = .004) suggesting that athletes of different maturity status responded differentially to the same relative resisted sprint load. Ten percent body mass load resulted in a reduced sprint time of ~15.8 and ~9.8% for the pre- and mid/post-PHV group, respectively. These results enable predictive equations to be formulated and appropriate resisted sprint loading, based on the intended focus of a session.

MeSH terms

  • Anthropometry
  • Athletic Performance / physiology*
  • Child
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Running / physiology*
  • Weight-Bearing*