How to Interpret and Apply FVP Sprint Results
What we know so far
Those who have been following our FVP Sprint blogs would know by now that we made it easy for you to run your own FVP testing session with our SMARTSPEED system. This simple protocol is based on new research (Samozino et al., 2016) that allows us to estimate an athlete’s force, velocity and power output during a sprint, simply using the athlete’s split times and some basic environmental and anthropometric measures.
So now we’ve profiled our athletes and want to get an insight into their individual performances. How do we interpret FVP Sprint results? This blog post will tell you all you need to know.
Given how relatively inaccessible FVP has been, there isn’t a lot of data available to show what good profiles should look like. Luckily, with our new dashboards, you’ll be able to quickly view and understand each athlete’s specific profile. The two key dashboards; FVP results page and FVP History (links) are explained in detail elsewhere but we will summarise them below.
Firstly, we need to explain exactly what we get from a FVP testing session. The first set of FVP graphs plot our key FVP measures over the time of the sprint. For these graphs, you can add any trial completed during the session and visualise what that particular sprint looked like. You can add multiple trials to compare athletes or trials too.
These graphs are typically just for informative purposes – the key measures come from our second set of graphs that we will discuss below. Nonetheless, you could use these to better understand which component of the sprint to focus on to improve an athlete’s performance.
How can we use this?
Ideally, we would draw comparisons between the FVP of the individual athlete and a target FVP that is deemed to be optimal for that specific population (e.g. individual male AFL player vs. normative data for elite male AFL players). This comparison highlights whether the athlete is currently lacking within the force component or velocity component (or both!) relative to their ideal profile. Coaches can then make recommendations on how to progress from the current FVP towards the target FVP.
For example, below is an example of an athlete who’s FVP is lower (blue) than the elite comparison group (purple) but with extensive weakness identified within the force component of the power function (note the relatively low y-intercept on the Force-Velocity plot). As a result of this FVP, the coach would consider prescribing a relatively greater quantity of strength training compared to speed training within the next cycle of the athlete’s program and could then compare again afterwards to monitor progress. As the athlete’s force component improves over time, the strength-speed ratio within the training program can be adjusted to ensure that the balance doesn’t shift in the other direction.
However, being a relatively novel approach to sprint profiling, normative data sets are not yet available. Therefore, we currently recommend 1) comparing within groups/teams; 2) comparing to individual athletes’ personal best performances; or 3) comparing with independently set target values. The SMARTSPEED FVP Sprint dashboards will facilitate these options. As normative values become available in future, they will be updated within the Fusion Sport blog and SMARTSPEED Online outputs.
Ultimately, FVP protocols offer great potential to begin offering your athletes new, targeted training to maximise their improvements in sprint performance. If you are interested to find out more about FVP, please get in contact with one of our experts at Fusion Sport.
Cross, M. R., Brughelli, M., Brown, S. R., Samozino, P., Gill, N. D., Cronin, J. B., & Morin, J. B. (2015). Mechanical Properties of Sprinting in Elite Rugby Union and Rugby League. International Journal of Sports Physiology and Performance, 10(6), 695-702. doi:10.1123/ijspp.2014-0151
Cross, M. R., Brughelli, M., Samozino, P., & Morin, J.-B. (2017). Methods of Power-Force-Velocity Profiling During Sprint Running: A Narrative Review. Sports Medicine, 47(7), 1255-1269. doi:10.1007/s40279-016-0653-3
Mendiguchia, J., Samozino, P., Martinez-Ruiz, E., Brughelli, M., Schmikli, S., Morin, J. B., & Mendez-Villanueva, A. (2014). Progression of mechanical properties during on-field sprint running after returning to sports from a hamstring muscle injury in soccer players. International Journal of Sports Medicine, 35(8), 690-695. doi:10.1055/s-0033-1363192
Samozino, P., Rabita, G., Dorel, S., Slawinski, J., Peyrot, N., Saez de Villarreal, E., & Morin, J. B. (2016). A simple method for measuring power, force, velocity properties, and mechanical effectiveness in sprint running. Scandinavian Journal of Medicine and Science in Sports, 26(6), 648-658. doi:10.1111/sms.12490