Effects of Psyching-Up on Sprint Performance

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Hammoudi-Nassib, S, Nassib, S, Chtara, M, Briki, W, Chaouachi, A, Tod, D, and Chamari, K. Effects of psyching-up on sprint performance. J Strength Cond Res 31(8): 2066–2074, 2017—The present research aimed at examining whether the psyching up (PU) strategies improve performance in 30-m sprinting. Sixteen male sprinters (age, 20.6 ± 1.3 years; body mass, 77.5 ± 7.1 kg; height, 180.8 ± 5.6 cm) participated in this study. Before each experimental session, the Hooper index was used to monitor the subject’s feeling for the quality of sleep of the previous night, perceived quantity of stress, delayed onset muscle soreness, and fatigue. After completing general and specific warm-up, participants had to rate their degree of self-confidence. Then, they were asked to follow 1 of these 4 conditions: Imagery (experimental PU condition), Preparatory arousal (experimental PU condition), Attention placebo (control condition), and Distraction (control condition) during the final 30 seconds of the rest period right before performing a 30-m sprint. Participants separately and randomly performed all conditions. Results showed that although the imagery and preparatory arousal strategies contributed to increase the performance in the short-distance sprints (from 0 to 10 m), the imagery strategy contributed to increase the performance in the 30-m sprints. These findings support the general view that the PU strategies could improve athletic performance.

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