Global Positioning System Analysis of a High School Football Scrimmage

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The purpose of this study was to examine the physical demands of a high school American football scrimmage. Male high school football players (N = 25) participated in a spring scrimmage. Global positioning system data and game film were recorded throughout the entirety of the scrimmage to determine the total distance covered, the distance covered in different velocity bands, the number of accelerations and decelerations performed, and the work-to-rest ratio of the scrimmage. The athletes were divided into 2 groups: linemen (L) (N = 7) vs. nonlinemen (NL) (N = 8) for statistical analysis, and independent T-tests with Holm's sequential Bonferroni adjustment were used to determine differences in movement characteristics between the L and NL groups. Average play duration was 5.7 ± 2.1 seconds, whereas the rest interval was 33.4 ± 13.6 seconds between plays, for an overall exercise-to-rest ratio of 1:5.9. Total distance, standing and walking distance, running distance, striding distance, sprinting distance, and total high-speed running distance covered by NL was greater than L (statistically significant at p ≤ 0.05). Distances traveled in each velocity band by position and by play are also included to provide context of our findings. Data from the present study add to the pool of support for the use of position-specific training in preparing high school football players for competition.