Effect of 8 weeks of concurrent plyometric and running training on spatiotemporal and physiological variables of novice runners

Eur J Sport Sci. 2018 Mar;18(2):162-169. doi: 10.1080/17461391.2017.1404133. Epub 2017 Dec 11.


Concurrent plyometric and running training has the potential to improve running economy (RE) and performance through increasing muscle strength and power, but the possible effect on spatiotemporal parameters of running has not been studied yet. The aim of this study was to compare the effect of 8 weeks of concurrent plyometric and running training on spatiotemporal parameters and physiological variables of novice runners. Twenty-five male participants were randomly assigned into two training groups; running group (RG) (n = 11) and running + plyometric group (RPG) (n = 14). Both groups performed 8 weeks of running training programme, and only the RPG performed a concurrent plyometric training programme (two sessions per week). Anthropometric, physiological (VO2max, heart rate and RE) and spatiotemporal variables (contact and flight times, step rate and length) were registered before and after the intervention. In comparison to RG, the RPG reduced step rate and increased flight times at the same running speeds (P < .05) while contact times remained constant. Significant increases in pre- and post-training (P < .05) were found in RPG for squat jump and 5 bound test, while RG remained unchanged. Peak speed, ventilatory threshold (VT) speed and respiratory compensation threshold (RCT) speed increased (P < .05) for both groups, although peak speed and VO2max increased more in the RPG than in the RG. In conclusion, concurrent plyometric and running training entails a reduction in step rate, as well as increases in VT speed, RCT speed, peak speed and VO2max. Athletes could benefit from plyometric training in order to improve their strength, which would contribute to them attaining higher running speeds.

Keywords: Biomechanics; endurance; physiology; strength; training.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Anthropometry
  • Athletes
  • Athletic Performance / physiology*
  • Heart Rate
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Muscle Strength*
  • Oxygen Consumption
  • Plyometric Exercise*
  • Running / physiology*
  • Young Adult