Reliability of Change of Direction and Agility Assessments in Youth Soccer Players



Dugdale JH, Sanders D & Hunter AM (2020) Reliability of Change of Direction and Agility Assessments in Youth Soccer Players. Sports, 8 (4), Art. No.: 51.

Considering the vast physical and neural developments experienced throughout adolescence, the reliability of physical performance may vary in youth populations. This study aimed to examine the reliability of change of direction (COD) and agility tests in youth soccer players. Altogether, 86 youth soccer players, aged 13.6 ± 2.0 years, volunteered to participate. Data were collected from a modified 505 COD test (m505COD) and the Y-sprint drill in both pre-planned (Y-SprintPRE) and reactive (Y-SprintREACT) conditions during 2 sessions, 7 days apart. Anthropometric data including body mass, standing stature, and sitting height were also collected. COD and agility tests demonstrated good reliability (ICC = 0.81–0.91; CV = 1.2–2.0; d = 0.00–0.31; p < 0.01) for our entire sample. However, we observed a small negative relationship between age and intersession differences for the Y-SprintPRE (r = −0.28; p = 0.04), and moderate negative relationships between both age (r = −0.41; p < 0.01), and maturity offset (r = −0.39; p < 0.01) for the Y-SprintREACT. Although the COD and agility tests adopted within this study possess good intersession reliability, we observed greater intersession differences for younger and less mature individuals. We suggest that while COD and agility tests may provide meaningful objective data for monitoring the development of youth soccer players, these tests should be used with caution when evaluating younger, more immature athletes.

performance; adolescent; fitness testing; physical; maturation

Sports: Volume 8, Issue 4

Publication date30/04/2020
Publication date online18/04/2020
Date accepted by journal16/04/2020
PublisherMDPI AG

People (2)


Dr James Dugdale
Dr James Dugdale

Research Fellow, Sport

Professor Angus Hunter
Professor Angus Hunter

Honorary Professor, FHSS Management and Support