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Sports, Volume 10, Issue 8 (August 2022) – 15 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): The aim of this study was to determine if the quantity of running load in the pre-season affects the incidence of injury in elite Gaelic footballers. Elite male Gaelic football players were monitored throughout one full season. GPS data and injury data were recorded. The participants were retrospectively divided into two groups depending on the workload completed during the pre-season. Although the low-training-load group had a higher incidence rate of non-contact injuries per 1000 h of exposure in each phase of the season, a statistical analysis revealed that there was no significant difference between the groups. Additionally, the high-training-load group was able to sustain greater running loads in the competitive phases of the season. Moreover, players who complete a greater proportion of running loads in the pre-season may alter their body composition levels to more optimal levels. View this paper
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17 pages, 1090 KiB  
Article
The Influence of Weekly Sprint Volume and Maximal Velocity Exposures on Eccentric Hamstring Strength in Professional Football Players
by Sunnan Shah, Kieran Collins and Lewis J. Macgregor
Sports 2022, 10(8), 125; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports10080125 - 19 Aug 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 5157
Abstract
Background: Hamstring strains are the most common moderate-major severity injuries in football. The majority of hamstring injuries occur during sprinting, with low eccentric hamstring strength being associated with an elevated risk. Objective: To examine the relationship between sprinting and eccentric hamstring strength by [...] Read more.
Background: Hamstring strains are the most common moderate-major severity injuries in football. The majority of hamstring injuries occur during sprinting, with low eccentric hamstring strength being associated with an elevated risk. Objective: To examine the relationship between sprinting and eccentric hamstring strength by monitoring total weekly sprint distance and weekly efforts > 90% and >95% of maximum velocity. Methods: Fifty-eight professional male footballers were observed over one-and-a-half seasons. Players’ running was monitored during training and matches using GPS, and eccentric hamstring strength was measured weekly. Results: Weekly sprint distance (ρ = −0.13, p < 0.01) and weekly efforts >90% of maximum velocity (ρ = −0.08, p = 0.01) both displayed significant inverse relationships with the percentage change in eccentric hamstring strength; weekly efforts >95% of maximum velocity showed no relationship with hamstring strength (ρ = −0.02, p = 0.45). Only weekly efforts >90% of maximum velocity significantly influenced the mean percentage change in eccentric hamstring force, F(3,58) = 3.71, p = 0.01, with significant differences occurring when comparing 7–8 sprint efforts with 0–2 efforts (0.11%, p = 0.03) and 5–6 efforts (0.12%, p = 0.03). Conclusions: Eccentric hamstring strength levels significantly decrease when 7–8 weekly sprint efforts are completed at >90% of maximum velocity. Monitoring weekly sprint loading at velocities > 90% of maximum velocity may be valuable to help to reduce the risk of hamstring injuries in professional football. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Physiology and Physical Demands of Intermittent Exercise)
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16 pages, 302 KiB  
Article
Stand up and Fight: A Case Study of a Professional Rugby Club Negotiating a COVID-19 Crisis, a Talent Development Perspective
by Ian Costello, Sarahjane Belton and Áine MacNamara
Sports 2022, 10(8), 124; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports10080124 - 16 Aug 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 5886
Abstract
A wealth of literature examines the role of challenge from an individual psychological perspective, but research investigating how a talent development system can proactively support athletes to successfully meet the ever-increasing demands of top-level professional sport is less prevalent. This study takes advantage [...] Read more.
A wealth of literature examines the role of challenge from an individual psychological perspective, but research investigating how a talent development system can proactively support athletes to successfully meet the ever-increasing demands of top-level professional sport is less prevalent. This study takes advantage of a naturally occurring but highly atypical developmental challenge as a result of COVID-19 to examine factors influencing the efficacy and effectiveness of the talent development pathway at Munster Rugby. Players and staff (n = 12) took part in semi-structured interviews exploring their experiences of the build-up to the event, the game itself, and the impact post-event. The data were subsequently analysed using Reflexive Thematic Analysis. Players and coaches highlight the groundwork undertaken to establish alignment and coherence, both horizontally and vertically across the talent development environment, and how this contributed to navigating the challenge successfully. The findings support the necessity of both the player and the talent development system being prepared to enable players to perform at the highest level. The findings point to an overlap between the development and performance phases of a player’s journey and the need to integrate short- and long-term objectives within a talent development system. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Talent Identification and Development in Youth Sports)
15 pages, 274 KiB  
Article
Aspects of Developmental Pathways toward World-Class Parasport
by Lise Storli, Morten Andreas Aune and Håvard Lorås
Sports 2022, 10(8), 123; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports10080123 - 15 Aug 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 2153
Abstract
The developmental pathways of athletes with a physical disability into world-class parasport are much less researched and understood compared to able-bodied athletes’ participation histories. The purpose of this study was to investigate the developmental pathways of para-athletes toward elite performance. Data from eight [...] Read more.
The developmental pathways of athletes with a physical disability into world-class parasport are much less researched and understood compared to able-bodied athletes’ participation histories. The purpose of this study was to investigate the developmental pathways of para-athletes toward elite performance. Data from eight athletes with physical disabilities ranked among the top performers in Paralympics, World Championships, and/or European Championships were gathered. Thematic analysis of retrospective semi-structured interviews led to the identification of four themes. The findings showed the importance of early childhood sport-related encounters in a family environment followed by sampling of various organized and coach-led sports throughout the childhood period. The youth sport period was highly heterogenous, albeit with important transitions towards elite-level practice environments, competition, coaching, equipment adaptability and the first intentions of becoming an elite-level athlete. Throughout, significant contributions are attributed towards parents, friends, coaches, athletes, and others, towards fostering a sustained motivational climate focused on improvement and further progress. These findings could provide useful information to tailor developmental models towards elite-level performance in parasport. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Talent Identification and Development in Youth Sports)
12 pages, 290 KiB  
Article
Serial vs. Integrated Outdoor Combined Training Programs for Health Promotion in Middle-Aged Males
by Gerasimos V. Grivas, Konstantina Karatrantou, Athanasios Chasialis, Christos Batatolis, Panagiotis Ioakimidis and Vassilis Gerodimos
Sports 2022, 10(8), 122; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports10080122 - 12 Aug 2022
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 2332
Abstract
The purpose of this study was to examine and compare the training and detraining effects of outdoor serial and integrated combined exercise programs on health, functional capacity, and physical fitness indices. Fifty-one untrained overweight/obese males (47 ± 4 years) were divided into a [...] Read more.
The purpose of this study was to examine and compare the training and detraining effects of outdoor serial and integrated combined exercise programs on health, functional capacity, and physical fitness indices. Fifty-one untrained overweight/obese males (47 ± 4 years) were divided into a serial combined (SCG), an integrated combined (ICG), or a control (CG) group. The SCG and ICG implemented a 3-month training (3 sessions/week) consisting of walking and body weight exercises. The only difference between SCG and ICG was the sequence of aerobic and strength training. In SCG, the strength training was performed before aerobic training, while in ICG the aerobic and the strength training were alternated repeatedly in a predetermined order. Health, functional capacity, and physical fitness indices were measured before the training, following the termination of programs, and 1-month after training cessation. Following the training, both the SCG and ICG groups showed reduced blood pressure, heart rate, body fat, and waist-to-hip ratio (3–11%; p < 0.001), with improved respiratory function, muscle strength, aerobic capacity, flexibility, and balance (14–61%; p < 0.001). After 1-month of training cessation, significant reductions (p < 0.05) were observed in health indices and physical fitness without returning to baseline levels. However, there were no differences between SCG and ICG after training and training cessation (p > 0.05). In CG, all the above variables did not change. Furthermore, a great percentage of participants in both exercise groups (90%) reported high levels of enjoyment. In conclusion, both serial and integrated outdoor combined walking and body weight strength training programs are enjoyable and equally effective for improving health, functional capacity, and physical fitness indices in overweight/obese middle-aged males. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Exercise Interventions for Health Promotion across the Life Span)
9 pages, 930 KiB  
Article
Modeling the Major Influencing Factor on Match Running Performance during the In-Season Phase in a Portuguese Professional Football Team
by José E. Teixeira, Luís Branquinho, Miguel Leal, Daniel A. Marinho, Ricardo Ferraz, Tiago M. Barbosa, António M. Monteiro and Pedro Forte
Sports 2022, 10(8), 121; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports10080121 - 12 Aug 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1471
Abstract
The aim of this study was two-fold: (1) to analyze the influence of season phase (i.e., the start of the in-season and mid-in-season) on match running performance in a Portuguese professional football team; (2) to determine and model the main factor influencing match [...] Read more.
The aim of this study was two-fold: (1) to analyze the influence of season phase (i.e., the start of the in-season and mid-in-season) on match running performance in a Portuguese professional football team; (2) to determine and model the main factor influencing match running performance during the in-season in this specific football team. Eighteen matches were collected by an 18 Hz global positioning system (GPS) from a professional Portuguese football team during the start of the in-season and mid-in-season. The match running performance was analyzed according to season phases, presenting significant differences in total distance (TD) (tlowerbound = 4.71, p < 0.001; tupperbound = −2.22, p = 0.002), average speed (AvS) (tlowerbound = 359.45, p < 0.001; tupperbound = −359.87, p < 0.001), and relative high speed running (rHSR) (tlowerbound = 13.10, p < 0.001; tupperbound = −10.21, p < 0.001). The logistic regression showed TD (β = −1.59, z = −2.84, p = 0.005) and AvS (β = 2.68, z = −2.84, p = 0.007) as the major factors influencing match running performance during seasonal variation. Sprints and accelerations showed no significance for predicting match running performance during the season phases (β = −0.05 to 1.07, z = −0.95 to 1.07, p = 0.29 to 0.72). Current research confirms that lower and upper bounds should be used to quantify seasonal differences on match running performance. TD and AvS were described as the main factors influencing match running performance during the in-season phase. Thus, it is important to highlight the pace and volume of the game to maximize match running performance. Full article
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8 pages, 809 KiB  
Article
Acute Supplementation with Capsaicin Enhances Upper-Limb Performance in Male Jiu-Jitsu Athletes
by Bruno Victor Corrêa da Silva, Gustavo R. Mota, Moacir Marocolo, Jeffrey S. Martin and Luciano Sales Prado
Sports 2022, 10(8), 120; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports10080120 - 9 Aug 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1848
Abstract
The present study investigated whether acute capsaicin (CAP) supplementation improves mean power output (MPO) and peak velocity (PV) during the performance of the free bench press exercise (FBP). Twelve (n = 12) male Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ) athletes (age: 24.3 ± 1.5 years, [...] Read more.
The present study investigated whether acute capsaicin (CAP) supplementation improves mean power output (MPO) and peak velocity (PV) during the performance of the free bench press exercise (FBP). Twelve (n = 12) male Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (BJJ) athletes (age: 24.3 ± 1.5 years, height: 1.74 ± 0.1 m, body mass: 75.7 ± 10.1 kg) participated in this randomized, placebo (PLA)-controlled, double-blind, crossover trial. For each condition, 45 min after CAP (12 mg purified) or PLA (12 mg of Celulomax E) consumption, the participants performed four sets of five repetitions of FBP at a load of 60% of body mass with five-min rest intervals. The MPO (t = 5.6, df = 11, p = 0.001, EF = 0.3, IC 95% = −0.55 to 1.05) and PV (t = 5.4, df = 11, p = 0.001, EF = 0.5, IC 95% = −0.32 to 1.30) were significantly higher with CAP supplementation versus PLA. Acute CAP supplementation appears to improve MPO and PV during FBP in male BJJ athletes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Effects of Pre-Workout Supplementation on Exercise Performance)
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13 pages, 1876 KiB  
Article
Full-Body Photobiomodulation Therapy Is Associated with Reduced Sleep Durations and Augmented Cardiorespiratory Indicators of Recovery
by Lauren E. Rentz, Randy W. Bryner, Jad Ramadan, Ali Rezai and Scott M. Galster
Sports 2022, 10(8), 119; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports10080119 - 31 Jul 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 3059
Abstract
Research is emerging on the use of Photobiomodulation therapy (PBMT) and its potential for augmenting human performance, however, relatively little research exists utilizing full-body administration methods. As such, further research supporting the efficacy of whole-body applications of PBMT for behavioral and physiological modifications [...] Read more.
Research is emerging on the use of Photobiomodulation therapy (PBMT) and its potential for augmenting human performance, however, relatively little research exists utilizing full-body administration methods. As such, further research supporting the efficacy of whole-body applications of PBMT for behavioral and physiological modifications in applicable, real-world settings are warranted. The purpose of this analysis was to observe cardiorespiratory and sleep patterns surrounding the use of full-body PBMT in an elite cohort of female soccer players. Members of a women’s soccer team in a “Power 5 conference” of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) were observed across one competitive season while wearing an OURA Ring nightly and a global positioning system (GPS) sensor during training. Within-subject comparisons of cardiorespiratory physiology, sleep duration, and sleep composition were evaluated the night before and after PBMT sessions completed as a standard of care for team recovery. Compared to pre-intervention, mean heart rate (HR) was significantly lower the night after a PBMT session (p = 0.0055). Sleep durations were also reduced following PBMT, with total sleep time (TST) averaging 40 min less the night after a session (p = 0.0006), as well as significant reductions in light sleep (p = 0.0307) and rapid eye movement (REM) sleep durations (p = 0.0019). Sleep durations were still lower following PBMT, even when controlling for daily and accumulated training loads. Enhanced cardiorespiratory indicators of recovery following PBMT, despite significant reductions in sleep duration, suggest that it may be an effective modality for maintaining adequate recovery from the high stress loads experienced by elite athletes. Full article
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20 pages, 1842 KiB  
Review
Science and Hurling: A Review
by Kieran Collins, Thomas Reilly, Shane Malone, John Keane and Dominic Doran
Sports 2022, 10(8), 118; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports10080118 - 29 Jul 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 8268
Abstract
Hurling is one of the world’s fastest field sports. Since the last review of science and Gaelic sports in 2008, there has been an increase in sports science provisions across elite and sub-elite cohorts, resulting in increased hurling-specific literature equating to an additional [...] Read more.
Hurling is one of the world’s fastest field sports. Since the last review of science and Gaelic sports in 2008, there has been an increase in sports science provisions across elite and sub-elite cohorts, resulting in increased hurling-specific literature equating to an additional 111 research investigations into the game across all sports science disciplines. The present review aims to provide an updated analysis of the current research on the game and propose recommendations for future research. Overall, intermittent aerobic fitness remains an important physical quality during competition, with a focus on games-based training methodologies within the literature. Within the current review, we provide updated normative data on the running demands, physiological responses, and anthropometric and performance profiles of hurling players. The increased literature across the sport has led to the development of a hurling-specific simulation, that can now be utilised practically in training and research processes for hurling cohorts. Furthermore, the monitoring of internal and external training loads across training and match environments, in addition to response variables such as well-being, appears to have become more prominent, allowing practitioners to design training regimes to achieve optimal dose and response characteristics. Analysing the game from a scientific perspective can allow for more efficient preparatory practices, to meet the specific requirements of players at all age levels. Collaborative research among the various sports science disciplines, is required to identify strategies to reduce the incidence of injury and enhance performance in hurling. The current review provides updated information to coaches and practitioners regarding position-specific physical qualities, and match-play demands that can concurrently support the training process within hurling. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Physiology and Physical Demands of Intermittent Exercise)
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13 pages, 910 KiB  
Article
The Association between Pre-season Running Loads and Injury during the Subsequent Season in Elite Gaelic Football
by Paul Fisher, Maria Faulkner, Michael McCann and Rónán Doherty
Sports 2022, 10(8), 117; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports10080117 - 29 Jul 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 3961
Abstract
The aim of this study was to determine if the quantity of running load performed in pre-season affects the incidence of injury in elite Gaelic footballers. It was hypothesized that a greater quantity of running loads completed will reduce the incidence rate of [...] Read more.
The aim of this study was to determine if the quantity of running load performed in pre-season affects the incidence of injury in elite Gaelic footballers. It was hypothesized that a greater quantity of running loads completed will reduce the incidence rate of injury. A cohort of elite male Gaelic football players (n = 25) was prospectively monitored throughout one full season. This longitudinal study involved the collection of GPS data and injury data. Participants were retrospectively divided into two groups and assigned to a high (HTL, completed >50% of pre-season sessions, n = 13) or low (LTL, completed <50% of pre-season sessions, n = 12) training load group based on the percentage of pre-season sessions completed. Data for total distance, PlayerLoad™, meters covered at running speeds (4.0–4.84 m/s), meters covered at high running speeds (4.85–6.39 m/s), meters covered at sprint speeds (>6.4 m/s) and high-intensity running meters (high-speed running meters and sprint meters combined) were collected during all sessions. A one-way analysis of variance (ANOVA) was completed to understand the variation of external training load data across the different phases of the season. A series of repeated measures of ANOVA were subsequently completed to understand the variation of external training load data across seasonal phases within the training groups. Although the LTL group had a higher incidence rate of non-contact injuries (large effect size) per 1000 h of exposure in each phase of the season, statistical analysis revealed that there was no significant difference (F = 4.32, p = 0.173, partial η2 = 0.684, large) between the HTL (14.9 ± 4.17/1000 h) and the LTL (24.5 ± 7.36/1000 h) groups. Additionally, the HTL group was able to sustain greater running loads in the competitive phases of the season compared to the LTL group, total distance (F = 8.10, p < 0.001, partial η2 = 0.299, large), high-speed running distance (F = 8.74, p < 0.001, partial η2 = 0.304, large) and high-intensity running distance (F = 7.63, p < 0.001, partial η2 = 0.276, large). Furthermore, players who complete a greater proportion of running loads in pre-season may alter their body composition levels to more optimal levels, which in turn may reduce the risk of injury while also helping increase or maintain performance-related fitness markers such as aerobic fitness. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Physiology and Physical Demands of Intermittent Exercise)
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16 pages, 4043 KiB  
Article
What Differences Exist in Professional Ice Hockey Performance Using Virtual Reality (VR) Technology between Professional Hockey Players and Freestyle Wrestlers? (a Pilot Study)
by Irina Polikanova, Anastasia Yakushina, Sergey Leonov, Anna Kruchinina, Victor Chertopolokhov and Liudmila Liutsko
Sports 2022, 10(8), 116; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports10080116 - 29 Jul 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2434
Abstract
There is little research on the study of specific characteristics that contribute to the faster adaptation of athletes during the transition from one sport to another. We used virtual reality (VR) to study the differences between professional ice hockey players and other sport [...] Read more.
There is little research on the study of specific characteristics that contribute to the faster adaptation of athletes during the transition from one sport to another. We used virtual reality (VR) to study the differences between professional ice hockey players and other sport professionals (freestyle wrestlers), who were novices in hockey in terms of motor responses and efficiency performance, on different levels of difficulty. In the VR environment, four levels of difficulty (four blocks) were simulated, depended on the speed of the puck and the distance to it (Bl1—60–80 km/h and 18 m; Bl2—60–100 km/h, distances 12 and 18 m; Bl3—speeds up to 170 km/h and 6, 12, and 18 m; Bl4—the pucks are presented in a series of two (in sequence with a 1 s interval)). The results of the study showed that the hockey professionals proved to have more stable movement patterns of the knee and hip joints. They also made fewer head movements as a response to stimuli during all runs (0.66 vs. 1.25, p = 0.043). Thus, working out on these parameters can contribute to the faster adaptation of wrestlers in developing professional ice hockey skills. Full article
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12 pages, 844 KiB  
Article
Relationship between Aggressiveness, Self-Confidence, and Perceived Coach Support and Head Impact Exposure in Youth Football
by Madison E. Marks, William C. Flood, Mireille E. Kelley, Mark A. Espeland, Christopher M. Miles, Alexander K. Powers, Christopher T. Whitlow, Joseph A. Maldjian, Joel D. Stitzel and Jillian E. Urban
Sports 2022, 10(8), 115; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports10080115 - 29 Jul 2022
Viewed by 1868
Abstract
This study evaluated head impact exposure (HIE) metrics in relation to individual-level determinants of HIE. Youth (n = 13) and high school (n = 21) football players were instrumented with the Head Impact Telemetry (HIT) system during one season. Players completed the Trait-Robustness [...] Read more.
This study evaluated head impact exposure (HIE) metrics in relation to individual-level determinants of HIE. Youth (n = 13) and high school (n = 21) football players were instrumented with the Head Impact Telemetry (HIT) system during one season. Players completed the Trait-Robustness of Self-Confidence Inventory (TROSCI), Sports Climate Questionnaire (SCQ), and Competitive Aggressiveness and Anger Scale (CAAS), measuring self-confidence, perceived coach support, and competitive aggressiveness, respectively. Relationships between HIE metrics (number of impacts, median and 95th percentile accelerations, and risk-weighted exposure (RWE)) and survey scores were evaluated using linear regression analysis. For middle school athletes, TROSCI scores were significantly negatively associated with the number of competition impacts and the mean number of impacts per player per competition. SCQ scores were significantly positively associated with median linear acceleration during practice. CAAS scores were not significantly associated with biomechanical metrics at either level of play. Perceived coach support and self-confidence might influence HIE among middle school football players. Football athletes’ competitive aggressiveness may have less influence their HIE than other factors. Full article
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9 pages, 247 KiB  
Article
Risk Factors for Contracting COVID-19 and Changes in Menstrual and Sleep Cycles in Japanese Female Athletes during the COVID-19 Pandemic
by Yuka Tsukahara, Yuka Hieda, Satomi Takayanagi and Aleksandra Macznik
Sports 2022, 10(8), 114; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports10080114 - 28 Jul 2022
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1861
Abstract
Although research on COVID-19 is prevalent, risk factors for contracting COVID-19 and lifestyle changes in athletes during the COVID-19 pandemic have not been thoroughly investigated. This study included 254 female collegiate athletes and 107 female non-athletes from Japan, who completed an anonymous survey [...] Read more.
Although research on COVID-19 is prevalent, risk factors for contracting COVID-19 and lifestyle changes in athletes during the COVID-19 pandemic have not been thoroughly investigated. This study included 254 female collegiate athletes and 107 female non-athletes from Japan, who completed an anonymous survey comprising questions about COVID-19, personal background and lifestyle changes during the pandemic. A total of 6.30% athletes and 6.54% non-athletes had tested positive for COVID-19. The majority reported no change in menstrual cycle (80.31% and 78.50% for athletes and non-athletes, respectively). Wake-up time and bedtime were delayed in some athletes (42.13% and 39.25%, respectively) and non-athletes (46.73% and 31.30%, respectively) during the pandemic. Body mass index (BMI) was significantly higher in COVID-19 (+) athletes than in their COVID-19 (−) counterparts (22.78 ± 3.40 and 21.26 ± 2.06, respectively, p < 0.01) and logistic regression analysis revealed that younger students and those with higher BMI had an increased risk of contracting COVID-19. The proportion of vaccinated students was significantly higher in athletes than in non-athletes (p < 0.01). Whether the student was an athlete or not was not a related factor in contracting COVID-19. Extra attention should be focused on athletes experiencing weight gain or staying up late and experiencing lower quality sleep. Full article
9 pages, 220 KiB  
Article
Comparing the Current Training Running Demands of Elite Camogie Players to Competitive Match-Play
by Philip Connors, Declan Browne, Des Earls, Paula Fitzpatrick and Paula Rankin
Sports 2022, 10(8), 113; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports10080113 - 28 Jul 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2071
Abstract
Training to meet match-play demands is a primary objective in an athlete’s preparation for their games. Despite camogie match-play running demands being available, how current training practices compare, specifically individual training components, remains unknown. This study aimed to investigate and compare current elite [...] Read more.
Training to meet match-play demands is a primary objective in an athlete’s preparation for their games. Despite camogie match-play running demands being available, how current training practices compare, specifically individual training components, remains unknown. This study aimed to investigate and compare current elite camogie training to match-play demands. Thirty-three (n = 33) elite camogie players wore 10 Hz Playertek GPS units during twenty-five training sessions and ten competitive matches. Training sessions were analysed using ball-in-play time and split into warm-ups, drills, small-sided games, running, and training matches. Metrics were converted into relative terms (per minute), to allow comparisons. Players cover significantly greater (p < 0.05) total distance (non-parametric standardised effect sizes (r = 0.45)), peak speed (r = 0.45), high-speed running (r = 0.13), sprint distance (r = 0.20), and total decelerations (r = 0.12–0.22) during match-play than training. Relatively, players cover significantly greater distance during running, small-sided games, and training matches compared to match-play (r = 0.21–0.29). Compared with match-play, running results in significantly greater high-speed running and sprint distance (r = 0.18–0.41), with greater accelerations (3–4 m∙s−2) during warm-ups, running, and small-sided games (r = 0.14–0.28). Current total training demands seem to fall behind match-play. However, relatively, training matches and small-sided games match or surpass competitive match-play demands. These findings may be utilised in preparing camogie teams for competition. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Physiology and Physical Demands of Intermittent Exercise)
8 pages, 266 KiB  
Communication
The Association between Bilateral Deficit and Athletic Performance: A Brief Review
by Petra Železnik, Vita Slak, Žiga Kozinc and Nejc Šarabon
Sports 2022, 10(8), 112; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports10080112 - 27 Jul 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1903
Abstract
An abundance of information can be found in the scientific literature regarding the bilateral deficit (BLD) in different contraction types, including its possible underlying mechanisms. On the other hand, studies on the relationship between BLD and athletic performance have only begun to emerge [...] Read more.
An abundance of information can be found in the scientific literature regarding the bilateral deficit (BLD) in different contraction types, including its possible underlying mechanisms. On the other hand, studies on the relationship between BLD and athletic performance have only begun to emerge in recent years. The purpose of this review article is to assemble and analyze the literature on the topic of the relationship between BLD and athletic performance. After a detailed review of the scientific databases, we analyzed 10 relevant scientific articles. BLD calculated from outcomes of vertical jumps was positively related to the ability to change direction quickly in volleyball, basketball, tennis and student population, but not in soccer. Sprint running performance does not seem to be associated with BLD, while one study suggested that a smaller BLD is associated with a more efficient start in a sprint. Apart from the associations with change in direction performance, there is little evidence to support the association between BLD and athletic performance; thus, further research is required in other sports, incorporating sport-specific performance outcomes and multiple tasks to calculate the BLD. Full article
10 pages, 852 KiB  
Article
Higher Leg and Trunk Muscle Activation during Balance Control in Copers versus People with Chronic Ankle Instability and Healthy Female Athletes
by Mina Karbalaeimahdi, Mohammad Hossein Alizadeh, Hooman Minoonejad, David G. Behm and Shahab Alizadeh
Sports 2022, 10(8), 111; https://doi.org/10.3390/sports10080111 - 22 Jul 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2112
Abstract
More than 70% of people with ankle sprain experience chronic ankle instability. However, some people are well adapted to this damage (copers) and do not suffer from chronic ankle instability (CAI). This cross-sectional study involved 34 female athletes, who were classified into three [...] Read more.
More than 70% of people with ankle sprain experience chronic ankle instability. However, some people are well adapted to this damage (copers) and do not suffer from chronic ankle instability (CAI). This cross-sectional study involved 34 female athletes, who were classified into three groups (athletes with CAI, copers, and healthy athletes) and tested on a Biodex Balance System. Surface electromyography (EMG) and balance scores were monitored. The coper and healthy group exhibited higher medial gastrocnemius (MG) EMG activity during unstable balance conditions. The rectus abdominus (RA) in the coper group and rectus femoris (RF) in the healthy group showed greater EMG activity compared to CAI during unstable conditions. During stable conditions, the coper group showed greater RA EMG activity compared to CAI, as well as higher tibialis anterior (TA) EMG activity compared to the healthy group. Additionally, balance error scores were higher in the CAI group than those in the healthy group under unstable conditions. In conclusion, decreased EMG activity of the MG, RF, and RA in CAI athletes may contribute to impaired balance in these individuals. The increased EMG activity of the MG, TA, and RA in copers might result in more trunk and ankle stability. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sports Injury: Prevention and Rehabilitation)
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