Date of Award

6-2008

Degree Name

Master of Science

Department

Health, Physical Education, and Recreation (to 2011)

First Advisor

Dr. Michael G. Miller

Second Advisor

Dr. Christopher C. Cheatham

Third Advisor

Ms. Jennifer Query

Access Setting

Masters Thesis-Open Access

Abstract

This study investigated the effectiveness of improving performance of adolescents with the in-season Bigger Faster Stronger (BFS) program. Thirty seven high school athletes were divided into three groups; BFS (n=l4 ), traditional weight training (n= l0), and control (n= 13 ). Each participant went through a battery of seven performance pre-tests and post-tests ( estimated 1 ORM incline bench, broad jump, one minute sit-up test, t-test, line drill, 40 yard sprint, 1.5 mile run). Following the pre-testing, the control group continued to participate in their sport. The BFS group participated in the in-season BFS program (30 minute supervised session consisting of a warm up; agility, plyometric, sprints, core lifts; squats, hang cleans, bench presses, deadlifts, and stretches) conducted twice a week. The components of the traditional weight training program performed twice a week included; a cardiovascular warm-up, followed by dynamic stretches and footwork exercises, various resistance training exercises in the weight room using a circuit training system, and a 5 minute cool-down followed by static stretches. After four weeks, the seven performance tests were conducted again for all subjects.

Subjects in the BFS group were unable to improve their performance significantly in most tests (except the one minute sit up for males) in four weeks. The athletes in the study may not have improved in the performance tests for various reasons; possibility of overtraining, fatigue on day of testing, insufficient load, length of program being too short to produce strength gains for large muscle groups, less potential for neurological adaptations, and the validity of the performance tests in assessing BFS improvements. Although slight improvements were found in this study, future investigations should examine continuing the training protocol for an additional period to determine if a longer in-season training program would produce significant performance improvements.

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