Exploring Relationships Between Anthropometry, Body Composition, Maturation, and Selection for Competition: A Study in Youth Soccer Players

Filipe Manuel Clemente, Cain C.T. Clark, César Leão, Ana Filipa Silva, Ricardo Lima, Hugo Sarmento, António J. Figueiredo, Thomas Rosemann, Beat Knechtle

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    10 Citations (Scopus)
    41 Downloads (Pure)


    Purpose: The purpose of this study was to analyze variations of selection for competition between late and early mature players and test the relationships between anthropometry, body composition, maturation, and selection for competition. Methods: Seventy-nine youth soccer players from under-11 to under-14 participated in this study, over 6 months. Body composition and maturity offset were estimated based on anthropometric data collected. Participants were also monitored for their number of matches as starters and time of play accrued in minutes. Results: Minutes played had large correlation coefficients with maturity offset (r = 0.58), and leg length and sitting height interaction (r = 0.56). Multiple linear regression explained 35% of the variation in minutes played (p < 0.001, R2 = 0.41, R2adjusted = 0.35, RMSE = 334.8), but only 12% of the variation in matches as starter (p = 0.04, R2 = 0.21, R2adjusted = 0.12, RMSE = 5.47) between above and below the median of the maturity offset was accounted for, respectively. Conclusions: Although maturation may play a role in the minutes of play accrued and matches as starters in young, it is not necessarily determining. A significant amount of the variation in the minutes of play accrued of players can be accounted for when considering body composition and anthropometric data.

    Original languageEnglish
    Article number651735
    JournalFrontiers in Physiology
    Publication statusPublished - 11 Mar 2021


    HS gratefully acknowledges the support of a Spanish government subproject ?Integration ways between qualitative and quantitative data, multiple case development, and synthesis review as main axis for an innovative future in physical activity and sports research? (PGC2018-098742-B-C31) (Ministerio de Econom?a y Competitividad, Programa Estatal de Generaci?n de Conocimiento y Fortalecimiento Cient?fico y Tecnol?gico del Sistema I + D + i), which is part of the coordinated project ?New approach of research in physical activity and sport from mixed methods perspective (NARPAS_MM) (SPGC201800X098742CV0)


    • football
    • maturation
    • motor development
    • performance
    • talent development
    • young

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Physiology
    • Physiology (medical)


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