Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
ISSN: 1303 - 2968   
Ios-APP Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
Androit-APP Journal of Sports Science and Medicine
©Journal of Sports Science and Medicine (2020) 19, 535 - 546

Research article
Can A Superimposed Whole-Body Electromyostimulation Intervention Enhance the Effects of a 10-Week Athletic Strength Training in Youth Elite Soccer Players?
Oliver Ludwig1, , Joshua Berger1, Torsten Schuh2, Marco Backfisch1, Stephan Becker1, Michael Fröhlich1
Author Information
1 Department of Sports Science, Technische Universität Kaiserslautern, Kaiserslautern, Germany
2 Nachwuchsleistungszentrum Saar (Youth Academy) SV 07 Elversberg, Elversberg, Germany

Oliver Ludwig
✉ Department of Sports Science, Technische Universität Kaiserslautern, 67663 Kaiserslautern, Germany.
Publish Date
Received: 27-02-2020
Accepted: 18-06-2020
Published (online): 13-08-2020
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Strength training in youth soccer has both a preventive and a sports-specific component. Whole-body electromyostimulation (WB-EMS) could represent an interesting time-saving add-on to classical strength exercises in performance-oriented soccer. The objective of this study was to find out whether a 10-week superimposed WB-EMS training might have a more positive impact on strength parameters in male youth elite soccer players than regular athletic strength exercises alone. A total of 30 male youth soccer players from a youth academy aged 15 to 17 years participated in the study. Before and after the intervention, the isometric extension and flexion forces of trunk and knee, and the hip abduction and adduction forces were tested. Twelve players (control group) absolved a conventional 20-minute strength training once a week for a period of ten weeks. Eighteen players absolved the same exercises but with superimposed WB-EMS. Blood creatine kinase concentration was measured for training control. ANOVAs, Friedman tests and post hoc t-tests were calculated (p = 0.05) to examine the strength development during the training period between the groups. While we could not find significant strength increases in the leg, hip and trunk muscles in the control group (<4%), the strength of the WB-EMS group improved significantly in 4 of the 6 muscle groups tested. In this group, the strength of knee flexors increased significantly by 20.68 ± 21.55%, knee extensors by 31.43 ± 37.02%, hip adductors by 21.70 ± 12.86% and trunk flexors by 33.72 ± 27.43%. The rates of strength increase are partly in line with other studies, partly clearly higher, which might be explained by the athletically active target group. A 10-week superimposed WB-EMS training improves the strength of certain leg, hip and trunk muscles in male adolescent elite soccer players to a greater extent than a pure athletic strength training of the same duration.

Key words: WB-EMS, youth soccer, athletic training, core muscles, physical performance

           Key Points
  • Superimposed Whole-Body Electromyostimulation is an effective training method and increases the strength of certain leg, hip and trunk muscles in ado-lescent soccer players.
  • During a ten-week training, average increases in strength between 8 and 33% could be observed.
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