Schneider, V., Arnold, B., Martin, K., Bell, D., & Crocker, P. (1998). Detraining effects in college football players during the competitive season. Journal of Strength and Conditioning, 12, 42-45.

College football players (N = 28) were divided into linemen and non-linemen to determine if a player's position might influence detraining. Tests (isokinetic strength, anaerobic capacity, aerobic capacity) were conducted before and after the season.

Both groups declined in bench-press, and the non-lineman group decreased in flexibility and vertical jump. Aerobic capacity increased 6% while all other tests remained unchanged.

Implication. These results raise the question of why practical-test performances deteriorated across a series of participation. One interpretation is that the factors measured were unrelated to football performance and therefore, were not stimulated by participation. The proposal that maintenance programs be introduced to stimulate these factors could be construed as implementing an irrelevant element to an already demanding program. In one sense, this study could indicate an occurrence of the "if you don't use it, you'll lose it" principle in exercise.

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