Sleep patterns and match performance in elite Australian basketball athletes

J Sci Med Sport. 2017 Aug;20(8):786-789. doi: 10.1016/j.jsams.2016.11.016. Epub 2017 Jan 24.


Objectives: To assess sleep patterns and associations between sleep and match performance in elite Australian female basketball players.

Design: Prospective cohort study.

Methods: Seventeen elite female basketball players were monitored across two consecutive in-season competitions (30 weeks). Total sleep time and sleep efficiency were determined using triaxial accelerometers for Baseline, Pre-match, Match-day and Post-match timings. Match performance was determined using the basketball efficiency statistic (EFF). The effects of match schedule (Regular versus Double-Header; Home versus Away) and sleep on EFF were assessed.

Results: The Double-Header condition changed the pattern of sleep when compared with the Regular condition (F(3,48)=3.763, P=0.017), where total sleep time Post-match was 11% less for Double-Header (mean±SD; 7.2±1.4h) compared with Regular (8.0±1.3h; P=0.007). Total sleep time for Double-Header was greater Pre-match (8.2±1.7h) compared with Baseline (7.1±1.6h; P=0.022) and Match-day (7.3±1.5h; P=0.007). Small correlations existed between sleep metrics at Pre-match and EFF for pooled data (r=-0.39 to -0.22; P≥0.238). Relationships between total sleep time and EFF ranged from moderate negative to large positive correlations for individual players (r=-0.37 to 0.62) and reached significance for one player (r=0.60; P=0.025).

Conclusions: Match schedule can affect the sleep patterns of elite female basketball players. A large degree of inter-individual variability existed in the relationship between sleep and match performance; nevertheless, sleep monitoring might assist in the optimisation of performance for some athletes.

Keywords: Accelerometers; Algorithms; Athletic performance; Female; Sports.

MeSH terms

  • Accelerometry
  • Analysis of Variance
  • Athletic Performance / physiology*
  • Basketball / physiology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Prospective Studies
  • Sleep / physiology*