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The Dependence of Running Speed and Muscle Strength on the Serum Concentration of Vitamin D in Young Male Professional Football Players Residing in the Russian Federation


The Dependence of Running Speed and Muscle Strength on the Serum Concentration of Vitamin D in Young Male Professional Football Players Residing in the Russian Federation

Eduard Bezuglov et al. Nutrients.


Background: Vitamin D insufficiency is prevalent among athletes, and it can negatively affect physical performance. At the same time, most of the available data were obtained from untrained individuals of various ages, and published studies performed in athletes led to contradictory conclusions. Methods: This cohort prospective study examined the serum concentration of 25-hydroxycalciferol (25(OH)D) and its association with running speed and muscle power in 131 young football players (mean age 15.6 ± 2.4 years). Results: 25(OH)D levels were below reference in 42.8% (serum 25(OH)D <30 ng/mL) and above reference in 30.5% of the participants (serum 25(OH)D 61-130 ng/mL). A comparison of the results of 5, 15, and 30 m sprint tests and the standing long jump test found no statistically significant differences between the two groups. Athletes from the 25(OH)D-insufficient group were treated with 5000 IU cholecalciferol supplement daily for 60 days. After the treatment, the 25(OH)D concentration increased by 79.2% and was within reference in 84% of the treated athletes (serum 25(OH)D 30-60 ng/mL). Testing was repeated after the end of treatment, and a statistically significant increase in the results of the 5, 15, and 30 m sprint tests was observed (Cohen's d was 0.46, 0.33, and 0.34, respectively), while the results of the standing long jump test remained unchanged. Body height, body weight, and lean body mass of the football players also increased. Conclusions: These findings indicate that there is likely no correlation between serum levels of 25(OH)D, muscle power, and running speed in young professional football players, and the changes observed post-treatment might have been caused by changes in the anthropometric parameters. During the study, all the anthropometric parameters changed, but the amount of lean body mass only correlated with the results of the 5 m sprint.

Keywords: cholecalciferol; muscle power and speed; treatment for vitamin D deficiency; vitamin D deficiency; vitamin D3; young football players.

Conflict of interest statement

The authors declare no conflict of interest.


Figure 1
Figure 1
Serum level of vitamin 25-hydroxycalciferol (25(OH)D) in young professional football players permanently residing in Moscow (percentage).

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