SG is a simple repeat high speed running test for field sports athletes, that can also be modified into a training tool. SG forces players to run at progressively higher running velocities dependent on the distance they are set to aim for. The intermittent, high intensity efforts and the distances at which they are executed are reflective of a significant percentage of work performed in full gameplay. Whilst there needs to be a baseline measurement and prerequisite level of aerobic capacity (as tested by VO2 max/endurance tests), there should also be a means of testing and training at higher speeds such as the SG.
The SG is cheap and easy to set-up, with simple markers and easy to understand instructions for coaches/athletes to follow. Through use of the specific set distances, coaches are able to ensure that their players are hitting minimum velocities without the expensive and time-consuming use of timing lights or other technologies. The markers also provide a more enticing competitive element in training with the SG, in that players will be competing with themselves (and teammates of similar positions) to make it to set targets in time. As opposed to the idea of running at submaximal/reduced speeds for a set period where players are chasing an arbitrary finishing point with no set goal to hit – a frustratingly longer and mindless process for the players. The SG is accommodating of the individual differences in positions/body types within the team, so targets can be modified easily by moving to a different starting position – a prop won’t be expected to reach the same distances/speeds as a fullback in rugby.