Summated training and match load predictors of salivary immunoglobulin-A, alpha-amylase, testosterone, cortisol and T:C profile changes in elite-level professional football players: A longitudinal analysis

Article


Springham, Matthew, Williams, Sean, Waldron, Mark, McLellan, Chris and Newton, Robert U.. 2022. "Summated training and match load predictors of salivary immunoglobulin-A, alpha-amylase, testosterone, cortisol and T:C profile changes in elite-level professional football players: A longitudinal analysis." European Journal of Sport Science. 22 (8), pp. 1156-1166. https://doi.org/10.1080/17461391.2021.1949638
Article Title

Summated training and match load predictors of salivary immunoglobulin-A, alpha-amylase, testosterone, cortisol and T:C profile changes in elite-level professional football players: A longitudinal analysis

ERA Journal ID9751
Article CategoryArticle
AuthorsSpringham, Matthew, Williams, Sean, Waldron, Mark, McLellan, Chris and Newton, Robert U.
Journal TitleEuropean Journal of Sport Science
Journal Citation22 (8), pp. 1156-1166
Number of Pages11
Year2022
PublisherTaylor & Francis
Place of PublicationUnited Kingdom
ISSN1536-7290
1746-1391
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1080/17461391.2021.1949638
Web Address (URL)https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/17461391.2021.1949638
Abstract

We examined how summated training and match load measures relate to salivary immunological and hormonal profile changes in professional football players. Data were collected from 18 elite-level professional male football players from one English Championship team across a complete 40 wk competitive season. Daily training (micro-technology) and match (computerised tracking) measures of total, high-speed and high-metabolic load running distance and sprint, acceleration, deceleration and sRPE load were converted into exponentially weighted moving average “acute” (7d), “chronic” (28d) and acute:chronic composite load measures. Bi-weekly morning saliva samples were analysed for immunoglobulin-A, alpha-amylase, testosterone, cortisol and testosterone:cortisol. A two-stage data reduction technique using partial least squares modelling and a backward stepwise selection procedure determined the most parsimonious model for each salivary variable. Testosterone had non-linear relationships with chronic total (P = 0.015; Cohen’s D: large), high-metabolic load (P = 0.001;small) and high-speed (P = 0.001;trivial) running distance and linear relationships with chronic sRPE (P = 0.002;moderate ↓) and acute:chronic high-speed running distance (P = 0.001; trivial ↑). Cortisol had a non-linear relationship with chronic high-speed running distance (P = 0.001;trivial). Testosterone:cortisol had non-linear relationships with chronic decelerations (P = 0.039;small) and chronic summated acceleration and deceleration load (P = 0.039;small). Non-linear relationships typically indicated optimal hormonal responses at squad mean loads. No load variables clearly related to salivary immunoglobulin-A or alpha-amylase changes. We conclude that chronic total and high-intensity load measures relate to hormonal changes and might be useful indicators of player readiness. Acute load variables were not related to immunological or hormonal changes and consequently, should not be used as surrogate measures of player readiness in isolation.

KeywordsFootball; monitoring; stress; saliva; immunology; endocrinology
ANZSRC Field of Research 2020420799. Sports science and exercise not elsewhere classified
Byline AffiliationsSt Mary's University, United Kingdom
Edith Cowan University
University of Bath, United Kingdom
Swansea University, United Kingdom
University of New England
University of Southern Queensland
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