Training and Competition Activity Profiles of Australian Football Field Umpires Academic Article uri icon


  • Jessiman, SW, Harvey, B, Corrigan, SL, and Gastin, PB. Training and competition activity profiles of Australian football field umpires. J Strength Cond Res XX(X): 000-000, 2019-The purpose of this study was to determine the activity profiles of Australian football (AF) field umpires during training and competition, and subsequently assess the specificity to competition of locomotor training sessions. Microtechnology incorporating a 5-Hz (interpolated to 15 Hz) global positioning system sensor tracked the movements of 24 field umpires during matches at the Melbourne Cricket Ground and fitness and skill-based training sessions before competition. Paired t-tests or Wilcoxon signed-rank tests determined whether significant differences existed between single training session and competition paired samples, with Cohen's d effect size and percent differences describing the magnitude of the training-competition differences. Absolute measures of total (d = 5.4; percent difference = 85.8%) and high-speed distance (>14.4 km·h) (1.0; 36.9%), as well as accelerations (3.3; 106.3%) and decelerations (3.2; 107.5%) were significantly greater during competition compared with training (p < 0.001). When standardized for time, high-speed distance (1.4; 52.0%), sprint distance (>23.0 km·h) (0.9; 121.5%), sprint efforts (1.0; 107.4%), and high acceleration (1.1; 114.3%) and deceleration (0.6; 66.7%) events (≥3 m·s) were greater during training (p < 0.001). No difference between training and competition was observed for relative distance. A single training session did not match the volume of work during competition, due primarily to large differences in duration. By contrast, training sessions were higher in intensity, likely to compensate for the shorter duration of training. Further research is required to determine whether the total weekly training load is sufficient to maintain and develop the competition-specific fitness of AF field umpires.

publication date

  • 2019